Caterham happy after solid day
British based squad happy with progress being made
By William Esler - Twitter @SkySportsWill. Last Updated: 09/02/12 3:52pm
After two days of pre-season testing Caterham are pleased with their progress ahead of the 2012 season.
Heikki Kovalainen was at the wheel of the CT01 for both days at Jerez and after ending Day One early with a damaged starter shaft, managed to complete 139 laps of the Spanish circuit on Wednesday.
The Finn posted the 11th quickest time of the day and believes that the team have made big steps forward this year as they look to break into the midfield battle.
Kovalainen said: "I feel very happy with the work we have completed today.
"Yesterday we had a problem that was nothing to do with the car so today was our first real day of testing and we had a trouble free day, completing most of what we wanted to on day one and day two and working through a variety of setup changes.
"We ran on each of the tyre compounds and I'm really starting to get a feel for the car. Basically it's good news because it confirms what I thought yesterday.
"This car is a lot better than the 2011 car, it's quicker and everything works as we want it to. We've made very solid progress and I feel really good physically, so I think there's a lot more to come."
Chief technical officer, Mike Gascoyne, was equally delighted as the team reached the halfway point of the first test.
He said: "An excellent day of testing and I want to congratulate Heikki and the whole team for the job we have done today.
"We ran KERS for the first time and completed everything we had planned with that system, so thank you to Red Bull Technology and Renault Sport F1 for helping make that part of the program run so smoothly.
"Today we were concentrating on the setup program, using long runs to really start understanding what this car can do, so having completed 139 laps we have made a huge amount of progress, particularly compared to last year, and now we have to make sure we keep up this sort of momentum for the rest of the tests."
Rookie Giedo van der Garde takes over driving duties from Kovalainen on Thursday, before Jarno Trulli gets his first taste of the 2012 challenger on the final day.