Formula 1

Mercedes-powered cars shone again on a damp day in Spain (©GettyImages)
Mercedes-powered cars shone again on a damp day in Spain (©GettyImages).

Felipe Massa tops day four for Williams at Jerez

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Felipe Massa topped the timings for Williams on the fourth and final day of the opening test of 2014 at Jerez as McLaren end with the fastest time of the week.

The Brazilian set a 1:28.229 in the afternoon and a damp track prevented anybody from
troubling the fastest time of the week set by Kevin Magnussen on Thursday.

Red Bull's woes continue as Daniel Ricciardo completed just seven laps on Friday, with the world champion team ending the week slowest overall.

Fernando Alonso ensured Ferrari remain the best non-Mercedes powered team having a successful day completing 115 laps and set the second fastest time of the day with a 1:29.145.

Most impressive driver of the day went to Force India's new reserve Daniel Juncadella. The Spaniard spent much of the day battling towards at the top of timings as he tried out a number of tyre compounds in the afternoon when the track dried out a little eventually finishing the day third fastest just three tenths shy of his countryman Alonso.

After topping the timings on his McLaren debut, Kevin Magnussen also proved he has consistency, completing the second highest tally of laps for the  day with 110; however, he was responsible for two red flags on the final both times seemingly of his own accord after spinning near the end of the lap early in the afternoon before going off again right at the end of the day, possibly after making contact with Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat.

Mercedes continued their strong reliability through day four completing a team high of 132 laps. They also became the first team to complete a race simulation doing so with Nico Rosberg in the morning as the German completed 91 laps.

Team-mate Lewis Hamilton was behind the wheel in the afternoon adding an additional 41 laps to his tally and setting the team's best time of the day, a 1:30.822.

Jules Bianchi ensured that not only did Red Bull have the slowest fastest time of the week, they also completed the least laps as the Frenchman made 25 tours of the Jerez circuit, five more than the RB10 managed all week.

Adrian Sutil crashed for the second straight day for Sauber while Kamui Kobayashi made his awaited return behind the wheel of an F1 car driving for Caterham, the Japanese had the best day for any Renault powered car completing 54 laps before finishing midway through the afternoon.

An enthralling opening test then has been brought to a close with concerns raised after a worryingly slow day one, to then having them eased with three teams and two engine makers completing over 100 laps on day four.

Many questions remain about Red Bull and Renault's obvious problems, however they now have three weeks to solve them until the next pre-season test  in the warm desert of Bahrain which begins February 19th.

Day 4 Standings:

1 Massa (Williams) 1m28.229s, 86 laps

2 Alonso (Ferrari) 1m29.145s, 115 laps

3 Juncadella (Force India) 1m29.457s, 81 laps

4 Magnussen (McLaren) 1m30.806s, 110 laps

5 Hamilton (Mercedes) 1m30.822s, 41 laps

6 Bianchi (Marussia) 1m32.222s, 25 laps

7 Sutil (Sauber) 1m36.571s, 69 laps

8 Rosberg (Mercedes) 1m36.951s 91 laps

9 Kobayashi (Caterham) 1m43.193s, 54 laps

10 Kvyat (Toro Rosso) 1m44.016s, 9 laps

11 Ricciardo (Red Bull) 1m45.374s, 7 laps

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