Better mood at Mercedes as new package arrives

By on Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mar.10 (GMM) Nico Rosberg sounded more confident after testing some of Mercedes' upgrade package for the start of the 2011 season.

Team figures had said the W02 is a second off the leading pace, insisting however that the launch model was "basic" and would be substantially improved.

Part of the race package was debuted by Rosberg in Barcelona on Wednesday, including a new exhaust layout and bodywork.

He was four seconds off world champion Sebastian Vettel's best time but Mercedes said the package performed "as predicted".

"We had glimpses that showed that the full package should be a big step," said the German driver.

Bild newspaper said that when Michael Schumacher drives the car on Thursday, it will also be featuring new front and rear wings.

"Then we will see the true strength of the car," said Rosberg.

Other German reports said the sidepods and brake ducts are also new. "I am hopeful because I know what other parts are still to come," confirmed Rosberg.

"I had plenty of fuel in the tank all day," he said after Wednesday's running when asked about the deficit to the Red Bull-owned cars at the head of the field.

"They are doing strong times. I don't want to say that we can beat them but we are going to improve," added Rosberg.

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