Day 2 round-up: All the key quotes from the second day of pre-season testing

Esteban Ocon ahead of Zhou Guanyu. Bahrain, February 2023.

Esteban Ocon ahead of Zhou Guanyu. Bahrain, February 2023.

There was a surprise leader at the top of the timesheets as Zhou Guanyu beat Max Verstappen during the second day of testing.

With the first day out of the way, all 10 teams took part in a relatively straightforward Day 2 of testing with only George Russell suffering an issue that required the red flag.

His W14 suffered a hydraulics failure and the young Brit was unable to nurse the car back into the pits as he was stuck in fourth gear.

But with plenty of laps having been done for all the teams and a lot of data gathered on the second of three days of running now complete, here is a look at what each driver had to say after the day of testing finished in Bahrain.

Red Bull

Sergio Perez: “I was happy to be back behind the wheel of the RB19 this morning. We mainly focussed on the long run, to make sure the car was reliable and that was the main priority. The car feels good, we have a good pace and hopefully we can get some good fine tuning in on Saturday.

“There are little differences to the RB18, which are mainly dictated by the change to the tyres but generally speaking it is pretty similar. I am happy in the car and I think we are in a good place. Now I am looking forward to getting a full day in the car tomorrow. We will do some good simulations for the race and try to prepare as much as possible for qualifying too.”

Max Verstappen: “Today we focussed on the smaller details and took little steps. Again, the car was responding well to everything we did. We learnt a lot for next weekend and of course for future races as well. I’m very pleased with the testing period, every time I jumped in the car I felt comfortable and could push instantly.

“A massive credit to everyone back at the factory, working throughout the whole of winter and even last year to prepare the car we have now. To see it on track and how it behaves on track is great. We’ll have to see how quick we will be next week but I’m feeling positive.”


Carlos Sainz: “It’s been another positive day. Reliability was again very good and we’ve been able to explore all the set-ups we targeted to test. We keep exploring the limits of the car and finding potential areas where we can maximise performance. The main target is to keep up the good work tomorrow and get ready for next week“.

Charles Leclerc: “We ran various tests today, with our main focus on the car’s set-up. We are working hard and it’s still too early to make any judgement yet. It was good to get some more laps down and we will keep pushing forward by analysing our data ahead of the last day of testing tomorrow“.


Lewis Hamilton: “It was a difficult morning. The hot temperatures made it challenging with the tyres overheating, as we often see here in Bahrain. We got through our run plan though and it was good to get that mileage in.

“Everyone is working incredibly hard, staying focused, and we’re discovering everything we can about the W14. We’ve got lots of work planned for the final day of pre-season testing tomorrow.”

George Russell: “Unfortunately, we had an hydraulic issue this afternoon which cost us some running. Even though we didn’t complete our full programme, we uncovered some interesting things in the data throughout the day.

“That is a positive and we will analyse these overnight with the aim of finding lap time. We haven’t unlocked everything yet in the W14 and everyone is working hard to do so and maximise our final day of testing tomorrow.”


Esteban Ocon : “We’ve had pretty much trouble free running since we started. We almost completed the plans which is much better, obviously, than last year.

“I think we should have a little bit more laps this morning but there’s no trouble with on the car and that’s all under control really from now on.

“We clearly had a good morning, good way of of understanding things and and a good direction of what’s on. Pretty pleased with how the morning went but obviously I look forward to to going back tomorrow in the car.”

Chief technical officer Pat Fry: “It’s been another productive day of testing for the team today with Esteban in the car in the morning and Pierre in the afternoon. With only three days of testing, we always aim to be ambitious by fitting in a busy programme packed with many different test items and, subsequently, various set-up changes.

“While we managed to complete over 100 laps today, the usual teething problems that do occur at pre-season testing did pop up throughout the day and that certainly held us back from completing more mileage. Nevertheless, we’ve gathered plenty of useful data to work through to help us continue our learning process of our 2023 package. In addition, it was good to have a smooth evening run under representative conditions with an eye on preparing for next weekend’s first race of the season.”


Lando Norris: “It’s been a productive day for everyone in the team. I did a lot of testing on a number of different setups as planned and we also put in a solid number of laps which is positive. I’m looking forward to heading into tomorrow’s running in the evening to finish off our run plan.”

Oscar Piastri: “It was a solid day for the team with everything running smoothly. Today’s session has increased my learning of the car and I feel like I am improving with every lap. It was good to focus on different areas throughout my drive, including the race simulation.

“We are going in a good direction which is pleasing to see on day two of testing and I’m looking forward to getting back out on track in the session tomorrow morning.”

Alfa Romeo

Zhou Guanyu: “We are well aware this is testing, of course, and everyone is trying different settings, but it feels nice to see my name and that of the team up there in the timing sheets. It’s been a positive day overall, we got more mileage in and went through all the targets and tasks we had set for ourselves, so I can say I am happy.

“The car felt reasonably good, both in daytime and night-time conditions, and I felt more confident pushing as the day progressed. Today was the final day of pre-season testing for me, and I am very much looking forward to the start of the season next week. I feel ready and excited about the new campaign and I can’t wait to be racing again.”

Aston Martin

Fernando Alonso: “It was a good day for us with a lot of laps completed – just what you need in a new car. We had a busy programme and tried a lot of different things. After a long winter it is good to get strong mileage under your belt early on and there is no better training than driving a Formula 1 car.

“I now feel fitter and sharper ahead of next week, which will be my first race with Aston Martin and I am very excited about that. I have another half day tomorrow so we will use this to continue learning and collecting as much data as possible. I am looking forward to getting back in the car tomorrow afternoon.” recommends

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Kevin Magnussen: “It feels good but it’s always hard to see where you are against your competitors. So far, we feel good and we’re happy with what we’ve got.

“We need to do more work to understand the car better and today we got into a different area, trying things we didn’t yesterday, so we’re learning. There have been very few problems and we’re now getting into more performance related testing which is nice and more interesting for us.”

Nico Hulkenberg: “Today was a positive day – it was a good, busy afternoon where we got lots of things done I feel and a lot of interesting data collected as well.

“Also for myself I’m building more of a connection with the car and trying it in different conditions, as you do in testing. I don’t think a qualifying run is the number one priority for me – I’ve done enough and I know what’s coming – and I drive in the morning tomorrow where the temperatures are not as representative.”


Yuki Tsunoda: “This morning we achieved the most laps compared to the rest of the field, so it was a good session. This also allowed us to catch up on our programme, as we fell short on the number of laps we wanted to run yesterday. Today we mainly focused on long runs where we found some limitations, but at the same time, there are positives to take from the good data we gathered for the race, which we can continue to build on tomorrow.

“Overall, I’m happy with my driving and feedback to the team, which is constantly improving. I will continue to work like this, and I’m excited to start working on short runs tomorrow.”

Nyck de Vries: “It’s been another positive day, even though we had a red flag. The session was suspended, but we still managed to get through our programme. We were able to test quite a few things, so in terms of our day we are happy, and in terms of performance it is hard to say. We have one more day of testing tomorrow, so hopefully we can complete everything and put it all together for the race.”


Logan Sargeant: “What a day, 154 laps completed. I’m a pretty tired boy right now, but I think it was a really positive day.

“We got through some low fuel running, we got through some high fuel long distance running and I think we really moved forward throughout the day.

“I feel prepared heading into my debut race weekend and I’m super excited to get into it, and keep working with Williams on improving the car for the season.”