World rally champion Sebastien Loeb is not expecting an easy ride in Barcelona testing next week.
The five-time WRC champion has been given an opportunity to test for Red Bull Racing at the Circuit de Catalunya, and it will be the first time that he has driven an F1 in anger alongside other F1 drivers.
The Frenchman will not approach the test completely blind though; he spent a day at Silverstone familiarising himself with the Red Bull car before flying to Barcelona.
“In terms of preparing for Barcelona, I don’t think we’ll see the same sort of conditions there,” Loeb told autosport.com. “I hope not anyway! So in that way it wasn’t so relevant but of course it was very useful for me to have some extra experience of the car, to find out how everything worked and check my seating position.
“It was also a really good opportunity to meet the team and get used to working with them.
“It’s definitely better as all the time in the car is useful. I know a little bit more about the car now and I’m not coming into Barcelona completely new to it.
“But I don’t expect Barcelona to be easy at all: it’s the first time that I will be testing against the regular drivers in Formula One, so that’s obviously going to be interesting!”
He added: “It was really good, but at Silverstone I only did about 100km with very low grip conditions so I could not really exploit the car. But just accelerating up the straight I could really feel the power so it was a lot of fun. I’m really looking forward to Barcelona now: I don’t think it should be five degrees and raining there!”