Virgin says it will take time to know the extent of the advance it has made with the major aerodynamic upgrade package the team has brought to Turkey, after effective running with it was cut short to just one session because of the poor weather.
Timo Glock – running the entire package – ended the day 21st fastest, 4.7sec off the pace of Jenson Button, while the German's teammate Jerome D'Ambrosio was 0.2sec faster using only elements of it. Glock said that it was too early to judge the impact the changes have made until Virgin has had an opportunity to process the data it gathered on Friday.
"This morning it was very tricky for everyone as there was a lot of standing water everywhere," he said. "In the second session we got a better chance to start evaluating the new package, which was really the priority for today because we knew there would be a lot of work to do.
"There have been some issues we have had to deal with, especially with the exhausts, and once we work through those we will be better off. Overall, we need to look at the data we have gathered now to see what we can learn about the new package because, as we predicted, it's not easy getting something so new to work straight out of the box."
Team principal John Booth echoed his driver's comments: "The elements of the upgrade package that we fitted to Jerome's car have performed well today, so we're pleased with the progress there.
"Timo's car, with the full package, was always going to be a bigger 'ask' because of the complexity of the car at the rear with the new blown-exhaust system. It is always difficult coming straight into a race weekend with such a new and complicated package and with no testing to optimize it.
"As we predicted there have been a few issues to contend with, particularly with the management of the heat from the exhausts. Generally, we've made a good start on Jerome's side but we have yet to realize the full performance potential of the wider package with Timo. We have a lot of work to do and a lot of data to look through to see how we can extract more from the package."