The first Alpine Formula 1 car made its on-track debut as Esteban Ocon completed a filming day at British Grand Prix venue Silverstone.
Renault’s chassis technical director Pat Fry described the running as “uneventful”, and Ocon said the team completed its planned programme for the day, which was limited to 100km of mileage as per the regulations.
“It was really good fun today,” Ocon said. “First of all, it was nice to get in the car again at a track like Silverstone as that’s always something special.
“The car felt nice to drive for the first time and we managed to get through our programme as planned.
“There was a bit of a delay this morning with the fog, but once that cleared, the track was dry and that made the running very enjoyable.
“I wish I could drive for more than 100km, but that’s the limit, and I leave here with a smile on my face.
“We want to take that into Bahrain next week when conditions will be more representative with the race tyres and some heat.
“All in all, it was a very interesting day and I can’t wait to discover more about the car.
“I have to say, I love the new colours. It’s the best-looking car on the grid!”
Ocon’s new team-mate Fernando Alonso will wait until the pre-season testing in Bahrain to sample the car for the first time. Alonso had required jaw surgery after a February road accident in the lead-up to the season, but since said that his preparations wouldn’t be disrupted and is all set to begin the season as scheduled.
The Silverstone shakedown marked the first time Alpine ran with its striking new livery, having previously completed 2018 car tests with Ocon and junior drivers under its new guise in a primarily black winter livery’.
“The shakedown today was uneventful, which is always good, to be honest,” Fry said. “We managed to fit running into the dry [spell] between the fog of the morning and the rain.
“No actual big problems as such, there’s always the odd silly little teething thing.
“But all went fairly smoothly and we got through the programme and by the time we actually started running I think it was only about an hour to actually get through it all and do it all. So that part of it was all fairly straightforward.”