Formula One: 2012 Silverstone Young Drivers Test Recap

As a cost-saving measure, some teams had proposed holding the annual young drivers test at Silverstone after the British Grand Prix rather than holding in Abu Dhabi after the season ended. However, not all the teams agreed with the proposal so we were left with three of the smaller teams sticking around after the British GP to test some potential future F1 stars.

Day 1 (July 12)

Occasional Williams Friday driver Valtteri Bottas topped the time sheets in the first day of the test. Marussia ran the Carlin GP2 pair of Max Chilton and Rio Haryanto. Chilton was the faster of the two but had an early end to his running with an engine problem. A fluid leak hampered Haryanto’s running.

The big story of the day was Ma Qing Hua made his first appearance in an F1 car. Hua is the first Chinese-born driver to drive a Formula One car. In 2003, Netherlands-born Chinese driver Ho-Pin Tung tested for Williams.

  1. Valtteri Bottas – Williams-Renault – 1:31.436
  2. Max Chilton – Marussia-Cosworth – 1:36.558
  3. Rio Haryanto – Marussia-Cosworth – 1:37.404
  4. Ma Qing Hua – HRT-Cosworth – 1:37.829

Day 2 (July 13)

The second day of the young drivers test was not held on the full Grand Prix (or Arena) circuit but on the shorter International Circuit. That goes from the new start/finish line and follows the GP track until The Loop (left-handed hairpin) where it diverts to join the Hangar Straight at Chapel. The track is only 1.9-miles which is 1.5-miles shorter than the full track.

With HRT not running today, the order was the same as yesterday. Valtteri Bottas led the way for Williams with the Marussia duo of Max Chilton and Rio Haryanto rounding out the top three.

  1. Valtteri Bottas – Williams-Cosworth – 48.963
  2. Max Chilton – Marussia-Cosworth – 49.932
  3. Rio Haryanto – Marussia-Cosworth – 50.405


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