Maldonado sets pace for Lotus at Barcelona

By on Saturday, February 21, 2015
Lotus F1 Team

Lotus F1 Team

Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado set the quickest time for the second time in three days at a cloudy and occasionally damp Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Maldonado set a time of 1:24.348 – the quickest time of the week – on the Super Soft tyres to eclipse Toro Rosso Max Verstappen, who also set his most rapid time on the Super Softs, albeit during the morning session.

Verstappen brought out one of the day's red flags when he stopped at the pit exit with 20 minutes remaining.

World Champion Lewis Hamilton was third for Mercedes after completing a full day of running.

Marcus Ericsson sat out most of the morning session as Sauber repaired niggling gearbox problems but returned to the track to end the day fourth quickest.

Sebastian Vettel’s day started in embarrassing fashion when the German spun off on a damp circuit on his outlap, just over a minute into the day’s action.

The session was briefly halted while Vettel’s Ferrari was removed from the gravel trap at Turn 4.

Daniil Kvyat was sixth for Red Bull and spent much of the afternoon conducting a race simulation, mirroring Daniel Ricciardo’s programme from Friday.

Felipe Massa was seventh for Williams as the team spent much of the day focusing on pit stop practice.

Pascal Wehrlein returned to the cockpit of the Force India VJM07 and placed eighth.

Valtteri Bottas tested the Williams FW37 in the afternoon session but did not set a lap time until late in the day as he completed a series of in and out laps punctuated by pit stops.

McLaren endured more woes as Jenson Button stopped on track just under an hour and a half into running, having completed just 12 laps.

Button spent much of the day in the garage and McLaren confirmed that they were plagued by similar issues to Thursday, when a faulty seal led to problems with the MGU-K.

Button returned to the circuit towards the end of the day, albeit running on limited power.

PositionDriverTeamTimeLaps
1Pastor MaldonadoLotus1:24.348104
2Max VerstappenToro Rosso1:24.739129
3Lewis HamiltonMercedes1:26.076101
4Marcus EricssonSauber1:26.34052
5Sebastian VettelFerrari1:26.407105
6Daniil KvyatRed Bull1:26.589112
7Felipe MassaWilliams1:26.91255
8Pascal WehrleinForce India1:27.33381
9Valtteri BottasWilliams1:27.55648
10Jenson ButtonMcLaren1:29.15121

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