Rosberg completes Mercedes-powered cars’ sweep of Bahrain test

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Running was more limited on the fourth and final day of Formula One’s first test in Bahrain, and second of the winter.

Still, in the laps that were completed, Nico Rosberg rounded out a week-long sweep of the fastest times by Mercedes-powered cars, after Nico Hulkenberg, Kevin Magnussen and Rosberg’s teammate Lewis Hamilton had led the past three days.

Rosberg’s best lap of 1:33.283 in the Mercedes W05 came during short runs on Pirelli’s soft tire, and was the fastest lap of the week by nearly a full second.

Times elsewhere in the field weren’t really as close, with second-placed Jenson Button more than 1.5 seconds in arrears and Kimi Raikkonen more than 3 back.

Raikkonen’s day ended early after a spin launching out of Turn 4, caused merely by putting the power down too hard on corner exit in the Ferrari F14 T.

Elsewhere of note, new Williams third driver Felipe Nasr got 87 laps in on his first day of testing, and more issues struck the Renault squads.

An electrical issue provided a very early end for Caterham’s Marcus Ericsson after just four laps, which spoiled their goal of running both he and Kamui Kobayashi for full half days. Kobayashi made it out in the afternoon for 17 laps.

The struggles continued at Red Bull, Daniel Ricciardo completing only 15 before parking in the garage. Scuderia Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne didn’t fare much better with only 19.

Lotus got in 59 through a spate of minor interruptions, with Pastor Maldonado posting the team’s best time of the week at 1:38.707.

Other than Raikkonen, Ferrari-engined cars barely got any running either. Chassis issued sidelined Adrian Sutil’s Sauber in the morning, and Marussia’s miserable week concluded with engine and fuel problems limiting Jules Bianchi from setting a representative time.

Mercedes continued to extend its overall lead in laps completed after Saturday’s running. The Saturday breakout times first, followed by overall laps after that:

  • Mercedes: 261 (Rosberg 89, Button 66, Nasr 87, Sergio Perez 19)
  • Renault: 114 (Maldonado 59, Ricciardo 15, Vergne 19, Kobayashi 17, Ericsson 4)
  • Ferrari: 94 (Raikkonen 82, Sutil 7, Bianchi 5)

For the week:

  • Mercedes: 1,147 (238 Wednesday, 306 Thursday, 342 Friday, 261 Saturday)
  • Renault: 619 (95 Wednesday, 201 Thursday, 209 Friday, 114 Saturday)
  • Ferrari: 556 (149 Wednesday, 169 Thursday, 144 Friday, 94 Saturday)

Saturday times:

1. Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, 1m 33.283s, 89 Laps
2. Jenson Button, McLaren-Mercedes, 1m 34.957s, 66
3. Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, 1m 36.718s, 82
4. Felipe Nasr, Williams-Mercedes, 1m 37.569s, 87
5. Pastor Maldonado, Lotus-Renault, 1m 38.707s, 59
6. Sergio Perez, Force India-Mercedes, 1m 39.258s, 19
7. Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull-Renault, 1m 39.837s, 15
8. Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso-Renault, 1m 40.472s, 19
9. Kamui Kobayashi, Caterham-Renault, 1m 43.027s, 17
10. Marcus Ericsson, Caterham-Renault, 1m 45.094s, 4
11. Adrian Sutil, Sauber-Ferrari, no time, 7
12. Jules Bianchi, Marussia-Ferrari, no time, 5

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

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