Formula 1 preseason testing is officially over, and here are the results

Formula 1 preseason testing is officially over, and here are the results

Trying to make any conclusions from Formula 1 pre-season testing has historically not gone well. Teams and drivers are figuring out their respective cars; you never know who is sandbagging, and this year, issues with the track have wrought a tiny amount of chaos on the whole ordeal. Looking at the timing sheets at the end of each day might not mean a whole lot when it comes to who will be fastest come the real race weekend (which is next week!), but that doesn't mean we won't take a look to see how testing went for the various teams on the grid.

The first day of testing saw triple Formula 1 world champion Max Verstappen set an ominous pace as Red Bull, dominant last year, picked up where they left off. Verstappen was comfortably faster than the quickest lap of the opening day of 2023 testing, completing 143 laps — two race distances — and wrapping up 1.140 clear of closest rival Lando Norris in the McLaren.

George Russell completed all the testing laps for Mercedes the first day, giving everybody their first good look at the car's interesting, new front wing design (just above). Team boss Toto Wolff said the mood in the team was positive, with Mercedes putting the emphasis on creating a stable platform for development and spending time making changes to the car in the garage. Meanwhile, Russell said that he thinks the new car is nicer to drive than last year, so that's a small positive for Mercedes fans to walk away from testing with.


The second day of testing saw Ferrari pick up where it left off in Las Vegas free practice – running over a loose drain cover, causing damage to the car. Only this time instead of Carlos Sainz finding the cover, it was Charles Leclerc. Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton also clipped the cover, sending debris flying into the air. This caused a red flag and for the session to be delayed, but the time was made up for in the afternoon.

Ultimately, it was Carlos Sainz who found himself at the top of the timing sheet in day two, this after the team had to make repairs to the car as a result of the drainage cover incident. Sergio Perez had his first time in the car on day two and managed to put it in second, just behind Sainz.

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