Around and about, July 1987

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Mansell fastest in Silverstone testing

The week following the Monaco Grand Prix was the scene of busy test sessions at Paul Ricard and Silverstone, in preparation for the French and British GPs on July 5 and July 12 respectively.

The Canon Williams Honda team set the pace at both venues, Nigel Mansell beating World Champion Alain Prost to quickest time at Silverstone while Nelson Piquet saw off the challenge from Ayrton Senna’s Lotus 99T at the French track.

After Keke Rosberg put his Williams FW10 on pole position for the 1985 British GP, with a lap in the 1m 5s bracket (an average speed nudging 160mph) it was decided that Silverstone needed to be slowed down. As a result, a new corner complex has been installed at Woodcote and the F1 teams tried it for the first time during this test session.

The verdict on the new track layout was generally pretty favourable, although the entrance to the pit-lane is to be moved from the start to the finish of the corner at Prost’s suggestion.

Impressive in third and fourth places overall were the Arrows A10s of Eddie Cheever and Derek Warwick, but Ayrton Senna’s Lotus 99T proved disappointingly slow, its poor aerodynamics keeping the Brazilian well off the pace on this quick track.