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Jarno Trulli drove the Caterham CT01 for the first time in Jerez on Friday, completing 117 laps along the way, a total bettered only by Bruno Senna. Trulli ran for the entire day without encountering problems, hailing the test as a true success.
"My first impression of the car was that it is good - a definite progression from 2011 and a good basis for us to work on for the season ahead," the Italian said. "Its reliability has been demonstrated all week here in Jerez and we have generated a lot of data, particularly on KERS and the 2012 tyres which will help us improve set-ups for the next couple of tests.
"We know there's a lot more to come in pure pace - perhaps we were the only team to run without dropping the fuel, but we wanted to focus on running through the development program and making sure we completed the plan each day.
"For me there are a couple of real positives from today. I hadn't used KERS before and, despite the extra buttons it means on the wheel, it's pretty simple to get used to it quickly. I think we'll see the benefits of that more and more as we keep learning how to get the most out of it. Also, for me the car felt balanced pretty much straight away."
Trulli's 2011 campaign was blighted by power steering issues, despite Caterham's (then Lotus) best efforts to solve it. However, this problem now seems to have eased.
"The power steering is good - we can keep fine tuning it, but I think it's basically a good package with a lot of potential for us to work on. A good way to start the season."
The second test session of the year begins on Tuesday 21 February in Barcelona.
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