Josep María Martí knows how to go quickly around the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, and after two days of running at a track he knows very well, the Campos Racing driver says the team has been making great progress in every area so far.

The Spaniard was the quickest driver on Day 2, setting the fastest time of the in-season test so far on a 1:23.681, and was enthusiastic about his and the team’s work on Wednesday.

“It was obviously a really good day for us. I had a good morning, put the lap together when it counted and when everyone had the option tyre on, and we were as quick as before,” he surmised afterwards. “It’s nice to be fastest but it’s not too representative.

“We’ve still got a lot to work on and a lot to understand with both the car and the tyre, so still looking to improve some things tomorrow, but coming off the back of Isack’s Melbourne weekend, it’s obvious that the car is quick.

“I felt like I underperformed in Melbourne and should have been at least on the podium in one of the races just based on the car’s performance. So that was disappointing.

READ MORE: Martí fastest for Campos Racing on Day 2 in Barcelona

“But I know I have the pace and today was a really good day for us. The lap was good, I feel comfortable in the car, especially in Qualifying simulation and looking forward to hopefully carrying that into tomorrow, which will be important.”

The majority of teams have conducted Qualifying simulations already but from there, run plans have diverged up and down the pitlane.

The Red Bull Junior Team driver believes that the Campos plan is differing greatly to what he and the team are seeing from their rivals, and says they are looking to push in specific areas with the car.

Martí says the team has a good baseline but are looking to maximise their findings on the final day of testing
Martí says the team has a good baseline but are looking to maximise their findings on the final day of testing

“I think we’ve taken a different route to some other teams. I’ve seen that other guys are doing lots of laps, just kilometre after kilometre. We’ve been focusing on doing important runs, testing certain items that we believe will help us, not just for this track but for the rest of the season.

“It’s the first season for everyone with this machine, and we’re still not 100% sure of the changes we would have made last year to the car would work the same way. So, it’s still a bit of a gamble.

“We’re still learning and testing stuff, doing bigger and smaller tests every so often and spreading them out across the three days.

“We think we’ve understood the philosophy of this new car and what it needs quite well”

“Hopefully we’ll have another good Qualifying simulation tomorrow, but there isn’t anything in particular I’d say we’re looking for. There’s a lot we can test, obviously certain things we know we want to do already for tomorrow.

“We also know what we want to change on the setup that will orient the car in the direction that the team and I want for those short runs. In the long runs, I’d say we’ll be focusing on what we need for the next few races.”

Already the team has formulated what it is aiming to achieve on the final day of running, but for Martí, their strong start to 2024 has been down to a well-rounded understanding of the new F2 car.

READ MORE: ‘Speed was there right away’ says Bortoleto after topping Day 1 of Barcelona testing

As some teams struggle relative to others, Campos has achieved four top five finishes, including three podiums and a race victory. It has left the team feeling confident they are on the right track with their setup and direction with the new Formula 2 machine.

“We think we’ve understood the philosophy of this new car and what it needs quite well,” Martí continued. “We have a car that’s fast across the three tracks so far and on four different compounds, so that’s a positive for sure.

“We know that if we go out on track with our setup, it will be decent, and we’ll be up there. We have a good baseline but it’s a matter of being a little bit ambitious. I think there are teams that, maybe don’t have the upper hand on us, but are on equal terms with us right now. We want to pull ahead, that’s the target, and so we’re working on that.”