McLaren is not “overly concerned” by the reliability issues it faced on the opening day of the second test in Barcelona, despite managing just 38 laps on Tuesday.
Stoffel Vandoorne first suffered problems during the installation lap, with the Belgian coasting into the pit lane and having to be pushed back to his garage by McLaren engineers. The issue turned out to be a battery problem that then resurfaced after just four laps, stopping Vandoorne on the pit straight.
Having finally got back on track for the afternoon session, McLaren suffered another stoppage when a hydraulic issue ended the day’s running early, but racing director Eric Boullier insists the lost mileage is not a major worry.
“Today wasn’t the day we had hoped for on track, but, despite this, we aren’t overly concerned about the issues that we’ve faced today,” Boullier said.
“It’s obviously not the productive day we had planned, but the problems – a battery issue and a hydraulic leak – are the types of niggles that we almost hope and expect to face during testing, in order to prepare us properly for the season ahead.
“We are here to test, and today is what sometimes happens in testing. It’s not ideal, and we would have liked more track time, but we’re working on it, we’re learning from it, and we’ll return to the track tomorrow armed with more information.”
And Vandoorne himself says the track conditions were still not ideal despite a clear improvement compared to the opening week, when all of the teams struggled with low temperatures.
“Today was challenging because of the issues we had which interrupted our running,” Vandoorne said. “We had a few stoppages on track, and we’ve been working through each one to make sure we’re fully prepared for tomorrow.
“The kinds of issue we’ve had weren’t particularly serious, but have taken a relatively long time to fix, so we weren’t able to run as much as we planned. The conditions this afternoon were quite tricky due to the wind, so the running we did wasn’t so representative.
“We’re hopeful the issues have been fixed and we can have a more productive day tomorrow.”
McLaren’s total of 38 laps was the lowest completed by a team on Tuesday, with Toro Rosso recording the second fewest laps with 54 after it failed to run in the afternoon due to a brake system problem.