The second day of 2014 Formula One testing at Jerez finished with Jenson Button at the top of the timesheets for McLaren, more than a second ahead of nearest rival Kimi Raikkonen in the Ferrari.
The Briton diced with former McLaren team-mate Sergio Perez as the track dried up after overnight rain, but surged ahead after the lunch break to clock a 1:24:165.
Pirelli added to the moisture on the circuit at first light by using a water bowser to further saturate the track to allow teams to test the 2014 wet weather compounds provided by the Italian supplier. Button went fastest on his second lap in the MP4/29, vying with Perez in the Force India VJM07 as the temperature rose and the circuit dried.
Nico Rosberg set an impressive pace in the Mercedes and racked up an impressive tally of laps, single handedly driving more than all the cars had combined on day one. In similar fine shape was Valtteri Bottas, the Williams proving reliable at this early stage while rivals Force India and Sauber faltered; Perez sat out the afternoon after his car cooked itself at turn one, and Esteban Gutierrez blotted his copybook with a spin into the turn five gravel just before lunch.
However, while Perez was stricken, Gutierrez returned to the track later on. There was grief for Renault-powered teams however, with Caterham and Red Bull both running into difficulty. World Champion Sebastian Vettel had to miss most of the day’s running after his turbo expired in a cloud of smoke inside the Red Bull garage, while repeated issues kept Marcus Ericsson out of the action for a large part of the morning. When he did get out on track, his run lasted a mere three laps before he too ground to a halt at turn one.
TIMES – JEREZ DAY TWO 29th January 2014