Formula 1, 2016-style, will burst into action this week. MTV, a Finnish broadcaster, reports that reigning champions Mercedes and also Williams will ‘shake down’ their new cars at Silverstone on Friday.
The teams, taking advantage of the 100km testing allowance for so-called ‘filming days’, will then move on to Barcelona for the start of official winter testing after the weekend.
And on the day before the official running at the Circuit de Catalunya begins on February 22, Ferrari will debut its 2016 machine on the Sunday.
AS, a Spanish sports daily, said Ferrari’s exclusive booking of the Barcelona track on February 21 thwarted plans made by McLaren-Honda.
The newspaper said McLaren originally intended to ‘launch’ its new MP4-31 in the Barcelona pitlane, but will now simply reveal it online on the same day.
The first running, however, will take place in the UK on Friday, and Williams’ Valtteri Bottas said he is looking forward to sampling the new FW38.
“Everything seems positive so far,” he told Finland’s Ilta Sanomat newspaper. “However at the moment everything is just in theory. We will need to see how the new car feels in practice.”
Bottas said he is itching to return after a long winter break.
“Yes, shortly after Christmas I was already starting to think about it (driving) again,” he said. “So it will be cool to get going finally.”