After setting the fastest lap of the week in Barcelona, Isack Hadjar left feeling very positive about his teams work over the course of in-season test. Campos Racing claimed the fastest laps on two of the three days, with the Frenchman’s 1:23.139 the best effort from anyone.

The Red Bull Junior Team driver was enthusiastic about his and his team’s work around the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in the week, indicating that Campos had accomplished a great deal to carry into Imola.

“I mean, the three days went to plan,” Hadjar surmised afterwards. “It was less messy than in the pre-season tests in Bahrain - we made the plan work and tried what we wanted to try, so that was the most important thing.

“Then the performance itself was really good. My driving was on point and to end up quickest is good, but it doesn't mean everything even if it's important.

“It's actually really difficult because you get three sets of softs and five of the primes, so there's not a lot you can do with that. So which way do you maximise it?

TEST NOTEBOOK: What happened during testing in Barcelona?

“The short run is pretty straightforward, but then for the long runs you wish you had more sets of tyres to try different things. I think we did a good job in terms of maximising the tyres we had and we made the plan work.”

Unlike the Bahrain pre-season test, the three days of running came after three important flyaway rounds to kick off the 2024 campaign.

That allowed teams to arrive with pre-existing and up-to-date data of the new 2024 car, meaning they could base their run plans around what each experienced across the opening races this year.

Hadjar says that it was a crucial event for the engineers especially, with the European leg of the campaign fast approaching.

“I wish I had more test days, especially the Qualifying runs. Qualifying is always what a driver likes, I think race runs can be a bit more tough, feels quite long, but I think it's so helpful for the rest of the season otherwise you won't do a good job.

Hadjar says the team continues to improve and that he feels back to his best in 2024
Hadjar says the team continues to improve and that he feels back to his best in 2024

“Honestly, I think every driver is settled now but for the engineers, they are still learning. We are, as a team evolving and understanding the car better, but on the driving perspective, I think we're not learning much more.

“Since the beginning of the season, and following on from a really good weekend in Melbourne, If we look at raw pace I don't think we are the quickest, but we are among the best.

“We are looking at the other teams like Rodin, I think they're really strong, but we're definitely up with the top teams.”

Perhaps most importantly though, the start to the 2024 F2 campaign has helped the Frenchman recapture his best form, with the Melbourne weekend his strongest in the Championship to date.

"I'm just enjoying things a lot at the moment, I feel like we’re going in the right direction every time we go on track.”

Hadjar says that Campos’ approach in 2024, alongside the team environment and his revamped mentality this year has allowed him to get back to his best.

“It gives you a lot of confidence and I’ve had this feeling since day one with the team. When I jump in the car, I'm fighting up front, so that's a really good thing to have as a driver.

“It's not something I had last year, so to have this feeling back is great. I’ll continue to put the work in but I'm quite sure I will fight at the front. There's no reason why we wouldn't, we've been cooking at every track in every condition so that gives us even more confidence.

“It feels like how it should be basically, which is rare in high-level sports, I would say our plan is working and it feels amazing, you know? The confidence is back, I feel like driving much better now. My head is a bit clearer, I'm not really doubting anything from the team, and I can go on track and just deliver.”

READ MORE: Hadjar ends testing with fastest overall lap in Barcelona

“With such little mileage we have in FP, when you turn up mentally ready and confident it's the most important thing. From lap one you feel more confident to push the car to the limit and you arrive in Qualifying with better baseline and think it's all it's all up here. So confidence is key.”

Asked where those changes have come from between seasons, Hadjar says that the start for Campos in 2024 has been a big reason, with the team’s early understanding of the new car allowing him to perform right away.

“I think it's a bit of everything. I think the team is doing an outstanding job, getting along really well. I like the way of working with the team, their method, their work ethic is good. So I'm just enjoying things a lot at the moment, working with them and as I said, I just feel like focusing on the most important now which is driving to the best that I can and I just feel like we’re going in the right direction every time we go on track.”