Day 1, 27/08/2008
The ING Renault F1 Team kicks off its Monza test
Nelson Piquet, R28-04, 117 laps, 678 km, fastest lap 1:24.540
The ING Renault F1 Team kicked off its Monza test today as Nelson Piquet completed a busy day of work at the Italian circuit just north of Milan.
Conditions were ideal with a sunny sky and warm temperatures greeting the team as the first day of testing got underway. That allowed the team to make good progress with its programme, which included set-up work on the R28 in preparation for the race here next month.
The team was running a new aerodynamic package designed especially to cope with the unique high-speed challenge of Monza. Nelson evaluated the new package and set about improving the overall balance of the car. In the afternoon attention shifted to longer runs and tyre evaluation.
By the end of the day, Nelson had completed 117 laps to give the team a good baseline to work from for the rest of the week. Fernando Alonso takes over driving duties for tomorrow and Friday.
Nelson Piquet: "It was a good day's work and nice to complete so many laps. It's the fastest circuit of the year and so we were trying out our low downforce package, which went well, although it always feels strange to drive with such little downforce on the car. The track was also quite green, which didn't help, but I was happy with the set-up work we completed, even though we still have a lot to learn."
Christian Silk, Chief Test Engineer: "A solid day's work with good reliability. We did plenty of laps to give Nelson as much running as possible with the car in low downforce trim. It's always quite a challenge here to set the car up as it is such a unique circuit, but we've colleted lots of data from the first day's running, which will give us a good base to work on from here."