F1 Pre-Season Testing 2018: Times and Tuesday Analysis from Barcelona

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistFebruary 27, 2018

MONTMELO, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 27:  Sebastian Vettel of Germany driving the (5) Scuderia Ferrari SF71H during day two of F1 Winter Testing at Circuit de Catalunya on February 27, 2018 in Montmelo, Spain.  (Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Sebastian Vettel set the fastest lap on Day 2 of 2018 Formula 1 pre-season testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in Spain with snow affecting driving conditions Tuesday.

The German superstar clocked a lap time of 1 minute, 19.673 seconds as he attacked the track on soft tyres.

Cold weather ensured the morning's run was heavily restricted, and the session ran throughout the day without a break.

Sky Sports F1 provided the quickest times from Catalonia:



It had snowed overnight at the circuit, and though the track was clear, the freezing temperatures evidently hindered the testing, as not a single timed lap was set in the first hour, with many teams instead opting to make evaluations using aero sensors.

Carlos Sainz eventually did so after one hour and 18 minutes with a time of 1:34.177 on intermediates.

After two hours, only he and Valtteri Bottas had recorded times, though the Finn's initial effort was 30 seconds slower than the Spaniard's.

The Mercedes man was putting in plenty of runs, though, per F1's official Twitter account:

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As the temperature slowly rose over the course of the morning, the track eventually saw some more action after around three hours as the times got progressively quicker and the likes of Vettel, Stoffel Vandoorne and Pierre Gasly ventured out.

Kevin Magnussen did not last long, though, as he only managed a handful of laps before a trip into the gravel required he return to the garage as quickly as he'd left it:

Red Bull's Max Verstappen's morning didn't go to plan either, as he spent much of it dealing with a fuel leak.

Bottas eventually set the pace in the morning with his lap of 1:20.270, which overtook Vandoorne's flying 1:20.325.

The Belgian's effort surpassed all of the times his McLaren team set in Barcelona last year, albeit he used the quickest hypersoft compound.

Ferrari's German driver Sebastian Vettel arrives in the pits at the Circuit de Catalunya on February 27, 2018 in Montmelo on the outskirts of Barcelona during the second day of the first week of tests for the Formula One Grand Prix season.  / AFP PHOTO /
JOSE JORDAN/Getty Images

Vettel stamped his mark on the day as he recorded the quickest overall time to usurp Bottas' run.

However, the former world champion was on faster tyres, allowing him to capture a marginally better time than the Mercedes vehicle.

It was an excellent day for McLaren, with the team showing genuine pace ahead of the new season.

Vandoorne's performance will have excited his team bosses, and there will be a renewed optimism in the weeks ahead. 

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