Date: 8th March 2017 at 7:02pm
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On the first day of the second test, Williams racer Felipe Massa set the fastest time of the day with a 1minute 19.726s, only 0.021s slower than the fastest time set by Valtteri Bottas for Mercedes on the third day of the first test.

That appears to have been too close for comfort for the defending three-time Formula One constructors champs so Bottas went out and set a new fastest time of the winter a 1minute 19.310s on the second day of the second test.

Massa did also go quicker and set a time of 1minute 19.420s, but at least Merc will be happier with a gap of a tenth of a second, especially as no-one else has got within half a second.

Not only are Mercedes rivals not keeping up in the pace stakes, they’re not keeping up in the performance/reliability stakes either.

With a split workload, Bottas and team-mate Lewis Hamilton completed 149 laps of the 2.889 mile Circuit de Catalunya, completing 430.461 miles over the course of the day.

Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen completed just 53 laps before he crashed and also over a second slower than Bottas.

Fernando Alonso only completed 46 laps for McLaren Honda, almost 4 seconds off the pace.

‘I don’t think we are too far back with the chassis, we have only one problem which is the power unit, There is no reliability and there is no power. We are 30kph down on the straight.’ Alonso told Sky Sports.

Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen however will be pleased though as he was able to complete 102 laps.