Nico Rosberg sets the pace in first in-season Formula One test

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Updated: May 13, 2015, 11:25 AM IST
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Nico Rosberg sets the pace in first in-season Formula One test
Rosberg followed up his Spanish GP victory by stepping back into his Mercedes for another 146 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya in Formula One's first in-season test of the year.

Nico Rosberg followed up his Spanish Grand Prix victory by stepping back into his Mercedes on Tuesday for another 146 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya in Formula One's first in-season test of the year.

The German was unsurprisingly the fastest of the nine drivers on track, with only tailenders Manor Marussia not taking part in the test, with a best time of one minute 24.374 seconds.

His schedule included setup work for next week's Monaco Grand Prix, a home race he has won for the past two years, the evaluation of new parts and some tyre work for Pirelli.

"Today was a great test day for sure," said Rosberg, who is 20 points adrift of team mate and world champion Lewis Hamilton after five of the season's 19 races and his first victory of the campaign on Sunday.

"The track was a little bit quicker than over the race weekend and we did many laps, so I'm a bit tired. But it's my only test during the season so it's important.

"The last sector here has a lot of tight corners -- so it's like Monaco in a way, which is useful. The car felt very good there so I'm feeling optimistic and ready for the next race."

Sauber's Marcus Ericsson was second fastest, in 1:26.624 with only five regular race drivers in action.

Ferrari had test driver Raffaele Marciello in their car, while McLaren, propping up the timesheets, tested with Oliver Turvey.

The Briton was held up by some sensor issues in the morning but had a trouble-free afternoon working on a suspension programme. Jenson Button, who complained about the car's 'scary' handling in Sunday's race, will be behind the wheel on Wednesday.

Britain's Nick Yelloly moved from simulator to track to make his F1 test debut with Force India and completed 109 laps.

First Published: May 13, 2015, 11:25 AM IST
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