Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes F1 - Malaysian Friday practices review

06.04.2007: Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes F1 - Malaysian Friday practices review

Sepang, Malaysia, Friday 6th April 2007

Fernando Alonso MP4-22 0 1
Lewis Hamilton MP4-22 0 5
T-car (Fernando) MP4-22 0 3

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes drivers Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton finished today’s first practice session in second and third respectively with times of 1:35.220 and 1:35.712 completing 24 and 22 laps. In the second practice Lewis was ninth with 1:36.797 and Fernando was 12th with 1:37.041 with 30 and 26 laps respectively.

Practice Session One:

Fernando: Lewis:

10.01: out / in 10.02: out / in
10.19: 4 laps, best 1:36.675 10.18: 6 laps, best 1:36.548
10.34: 7 laps, best 1:35.767 10.42: 5 laps, best 1:36.581
10.57: 7 laps, best 1:37.086 11.01: 5 laps, best 1:37.429
11.23: 5 laps, best 1:35.220 (2nd) 11.22: 5 laps, best 1:35.712 (3rd)

Practice Session Two:

Fernando: Lewis:

14.04: 4 laps, best 1:37.053 14.04: 5 laps, best 1:37.323
14.25: 5 laps, best 1:37.133 14.22: 6 laps, best 1:38.330
14.51: 10 laps, best 1:37.242 14.47: 5 laps, best 1:36.797 (9th)
15.22: 6 laps, best 1:29.505 14.59: 5 laps, best 1:37.988
15.16: Red Flag 15.12: Red Flag
15.22: 6 laps, best 1:37.041 (12th) 15.22: 6 laps, best 1:38.743



What was the focus of today's programme?

The team undertook a normal Friday programme focusing on tyre evaluation and general set-up work. This morning’s practice saw Fernando and Lewis doing short runs with longer runs planned for the second session. However the red flag stoppage affected the planned programme.

How did last week’s testing at Sepang help with today’s programme?

The team began today’s practice with a good basic knowledge of the track and the set-up of the car. At the test last week the team spent time optimising cooling systems and are comfortable with the progress made. As a result the practice today could focus on the performance aspect.

What special training did the drivers do to prepare for this race?

Malaysia is a very tough race on a physical level, with the drivers facing incredible heat and humidity that can cause them to lose up to 3.5-4.0 litres of fluid. To hydrate a fluid rich in electrolytes is used, replacing any minerals and salts lost through the effort of performing in the intense heat.

On arrival in Malaysia, in addition to indoor cardiovascular exercise and light stretching, Fernando spent time playing tennis outside in the heat. Following the Australian Grand Prix, Lewis travelled to Thailand where conditions are similar to Kuala Lumpur and began training in the heat, involving running and exercises outside.


"The team tested here last week when most of the set-up was done so we had a good basis for today’s practice. There is now some more data added to the file which we will look at overnight, but everything went as expected. I spent some time just getting used to Sepang again as I wasn’t testing last week, but there were no surprises, and I really enjoy this track."


"This is my first Malaysian Grand Prix, but I got to know the circuit well during last week’s test. The heat and humidity are as I expected and have trained for. The practice today was pretty straight forward, and we made further steps. The circuit conditions are constantly changing which makes it challenging to find the right balance. I’m looking forward to qualifying tomorrow."


"A solid start to our Malaysian Grand Prix where we continued the work from last week’s Sepang test. Today the main focus was on tyre evaluation on a circuit where traditionally tyres have very high levels of degradation. This impacted significantly on our lap times. We look forward to qualifying tomorrow."


"This circuit with high temperatures inside and outside of the cars is really very challenging and especially so for the tyres. We did a lot of laps and learned for tomorrow when we aim to get an order like in practice one rather than in practice two."


-Ellen Kolby , Wolfgang Schattling -

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06.04.2007 / MaP

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