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Alonso outpaces Hulkenberg at Valencia

NEWS STORY
21/01/2008

Just two teams were on duty at Valencia today, both of them running their 2008 contenders for the first time.

Thanks to a heavy fog, there was no real action until midday, at which point Fernando Alonso ventured out in the new Renault R28. The Spaniard completed 39 laps as he familiarised himself with the new car, completing a number of routine checks.

Alonso will be in the car until Wednesday, and will then hand over driving duties to Nelson Piquet Jr, who will experience the R28 for the first time on Thursday.

"When you have your first day with a new car, you always have to take your time to check that all the systems are functioning correctly," said the Spaniard, "and that is what we did today. We were able to lengthen our runs little by little and ended the day with a 14-lap stint. Everything went well, but it is still too early to try and compare our performance with that of other teams, and that was not the objective today. The good news is that we encountered few problems, and we will be able to continue our work tomorrow."

"It was a good first day of work," added Christian Silk, "which is always important with a new car. The whole team is very enthusiastic about working with the R28 and it is clear that everyone has given their all to get this new car on track. We were able to follow our programme without any difficulties and there were no big surprises with the new car. It is a solid basis on which we can build in the days to come."

"Today has been very successful," said Bob Bell, Technical Director, Chassis. "We completed just under 40 laps and the car ran pretty much trouble-free – that is about as good a first day as you can expect with a new car. We would have completed our first run pretty much on time if it had not been for the weather, and I think that's a real tribute to the whole factory and all the hard work that has been put in to get this car here today. Overall, a really positive first day's work."

A1 GP sensation Nico Hulkenberg was entrusted with giving the new Williams, the FW30, its first run. However, the youngster blotted his copybook with an off that brought his team's programme to an early end.

Today was an installation day for the FW30," said Sam Michael. "We got through most of the items on our job list and managed to do plenty of system checks. The car is now ready for testing proper tomorrow when Nico will be driving. Overall, it was a productive first day for the FW30.

Tomorrow, the rest of the teams will join Renault and Williams.

Today's Times - All Times Unofficial

To check out our FW30 roll-out gallery, click here

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