@mfbull: You've just given me a great business idea.
@CrM: They are. I'm not entirely sure how legal they are, either.
@Alan: We don't know fuel loads at this stage. Plus, his headline time, a 1:24.831, is much quicker than anyone else and was set on mediums.
@Alan: One second is quite a gap.
@GeorgeS.: The other side to it is that having just 18 cars on the grid puts the sport in a delicate position. One more team and we'd be on the limit at 16. Not to mention all the hard-working employees with families who want to get back to work.
@Mark: That's now up to seven laps, but it has been another slow start for McLaren. The MGU-K seal has proved pretty tricky for Honda to fix, so it could be more of the same.
@Ashwin: Yep, you're probably bang on. Ferrari has not done a race sim yet, but insists that was as per its original plan. Obviously the car is as close to Australia-spec as it has been all testing, so it make sense to do race sims at this test.
@prabul: Not quite yet, but they will do this week.
@GeorgeS.: Good question! McLaren hasn't specified which seal on the MGU-K it is, but it could be one for coolant or the seal for the shaft running back into the PU or one of the many other seals. The MGU-K itself recovers energy from the rear axle under braking, stores that power in batteries and then supplies it as a boost to help power the car. It's a complex bit of kit and the current ones are a big step up on the KERS units McLaren developed back in 2009 with Mercedes. Honda also developed an F1 KERS unit back then but it never raced because Honda pulled out of the sport.
@Alan: It's a slightly more complicated question that it seems. There is always a trade off of downforce v drag and then the power unit also comes into play. Red Bull often ran low drag set ups last year to compensate for their lack of power from the Renault engine. Equally the cooling requirements of the engine have a big impact on downforce and drag because of the need for cooling in the bodywork, so it's not really a straight fight. Downforce figures are also not something the teams publish, so it's all guesswork. However, I should imagine they are pretty evenly matched, maybe Red Bull has the upper hand - but that is very much a guess.
@Stephan: They are the two parts of the Energy Recovery System (ERS) but work in different ways. MGU-H stands for Motor Generator Unit - Heat as opposed to Motor Generator Unit -Kinetic (MGU-K). It harvests less power than MGU-K but is of importance as it works directly with the turbocharger. MGU-H acts as a generator to absorb power from the turbine shaft and, therefore, recover heat energy from the exhaust gases. The electrical energy can be either directed to the MGU-K as extra power boost or to the battery for storage for later use. However, when acting as a motor, MGU-H is also used to match the speed of the turbo to the engine and cut turbo lag, although this use has been made slightly redundant this year due to variable inlet trumpets on the internal combustion engine.
@Alan: Mercedes had a very well-sorted aero package and I know Paddy Lowe was a bit miffed that so much praise was laid on the engine and not the chassis. However, as I said before, the key to success is the aero team working alongside the power unit team to create the best package. The two - in works teams at least - should not be seen as separate groups vying for resources.
@Sulaiman: That was on the mediums. A very good time, but still 0.5s shy of the time set by Rosberg last week.
@NIKOSKOUVOU: It's been the same for both McLaren drivers this pre-season. Hopefully we'll see more of him on track over the next few days, but it's not looking good at the moment.
@speedf1: Alonso is out of hospital and has returned to his family home in Oviedo for some rest and recuperation. Apparently he wanted to test this week, but concussion is not to be messed with and a second hit soon after the first concussion can be very dangerous. However, he is fine and has no ill effects. This is just standard procedure for an accident of his type. His manager has made clear that the first race is what he is focused on.
@Oliver: No, but we do know they are still struggling with the MGU-K seal. Hopefully they will be back out soon. But don't get the impression they are all just standing around the car, there will be intense work going on in the garage to get to the bottom of the issue and engineer a fix.
@Russ: Red Bull were having problems right up until the final test last year. On the penultimate day in Bahrain the car completed just one lap! However, they did have an understanding of the issues and were able to fix them in the short period before Australia - it is not clear whether McLaren is yet in the same position.
@speedf1: The new Force India VJM08 is being prepared to leave the team's base in Silverstone today and will arrive in Barcelona tomorrow. The team is hoping to complete some laps in the afternoon before two full days of testing at the weekend.
@SK: Most likely pit stop practice. If the car keeps returning to the pits at the end of each lap rather than crossing the finish line then it will not register a time.