Latifi frustrated as sensor issue dampens Williams test

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After two strong days, Williams ended the first test on a minor low as sensor issues restricted running on the final day.

As the only Formula 1 rookie in 2020, Nicholas Latifi was set to complete his all-important first full day behind the wheel of the FW43.

But having caused a red flag in the morning and losing three hours in the afternoon, 72 laps was the second-lowest single-day total for a team.

“It wasn’t the day I had hoped for in terms of running," admitted the Canadian via FormulaSpy.

"I mirrored George [Russell]’s programme from yesterday in terms of the sequence, with a lot of aero runs in the morning, and then I was able to get a few pushing laps before we saw some potential problems in the PU data.

"However, the guys did a great job to rebuild the car and get me back out there and we had a busy last hour of the day, testing lots of items and maximising the running time.

"The lack of track time was unfortunate, but that’s how testing goes sometimes. Hopefully, we can make up for the mileage we missed next week.”

Williams head of engineering Dave Robson also put a positive spin on the troubles, with Latifi able to gain a feel for two key areas for any F1 rookie.

“The mechanics did a great job of rebuilding the car to get us back out in time to complete some useful new tyre running," he said.

"We were able to complete the day with a series of pitstops, which was a valuable experience for Nicholas and gave him an appreciation of how quick the stops will be once we get to the serious business of racing in Melbourne.”

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As it is, this week was still largely positive for Williams, who had already completed 296 laps in the first two and a half days which they had missed altogether in 2019.

By the end, the Grove-based outfit has totalled 324 tours of the Barcelona track with Russell posting the 15th best time of the week, just 0.014s behind Sebastian Vettel's fastest in the Ferrari!

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