ROKiT Venturi Racing's Edoardo Mortara recorded the fastest time of the day, and of the Valencia pre-season test during the fifth and final session on Thursday at Circuit Ricardo Tormo.
The 34-year-old flew to a 1m25.763s mid-way through the six-hour session, besting the previous benchmark set by Mercedes-EQ's Stoffel Vandoorne on Tuesday by almost a second.
DS TECHEETAH's double champion Jean-Eric Vergne followed, just 0.041 seconds back, while another Mercedes powertrain made it into the top three times of the week, in the shape of the Silver Arrow 02 of Stoffel Vandoorne - the Belgian also within a tenth of-a-second of Mortara.
A late lap from Mitch Evans (Jaguar TCS Racing) saw the Kiwi fourth, and another last-minute effort from Porsche's Pascal Wehrlein hurled the German up the order into fifth spot. Reigning champion Nyck de Vries (Mercedes-EQ) followed, with the Envision Racing pair of Nick Cassidy and Robin Frijns next up, also within the 1m25s mark.
In fact, every driver as far as rookie Oliver Askew (Avalanche Andretti) in 17th sat inside last season's qualifying lap record set by polesitter Antonio Felix da Costa (DS TECHEETAH) and just a little over a second split Mortara's yardstick and Maximilian Guenther in 18th.
DRAGON / PENSKE AUTOSPORT's Sergio Sette Camara clocked the most laps, with 83 on the day - despite a technical issue seeing his Penske EV-5 carried back to the pits on the back of a lorry early in the day's running. Over the week, drivers racked up more than 4,100 laps, totalling almost 14,000km of the Valencia circuit.
Preparations and development work will continue for teams with private test sessions pencilled in up and down the paddock, as well as countless hours on simulators prior to the season-opening double-header in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia on 28 & 29 January.
Published on 2nd December 2021
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