Both Ferrari and Mercedes topped a practice session each in Barcelona today but as ever both teams have manage to stay close. But Mercedes appear to have retained their gap over Ferrari in the more relevant FP2 session.
Mercedes v Ferrari
Mercedes appear to have retain their lead they managed to say ahead in P2 but Sebastian Vettel who is the quicker Ferrari had made mistakes. Both teams going into this race both brought engine and upgrades for this race but Mercedes appear to have retained there advantage.
Verstappen debut at Red Bull
Much of the talk going into this weekend was the swap between Daniil Kvyat and Max Verstappen. Well Verstappen made some mistakes on his opening run in P1 running off the track at Turn One at the end of his opening flying lap and damaged his first set of tyres.
Then reported he was “having problems accelerating” on his second run followed by a return to the pits. In P2 Verstappen was behind former team-mate Carlos Sainz and Daniel Riccardo but all looked good being within a second of each other.
Verstappen told Sky Sports “”I’m happy – for the first day I can’t complain. I am still learning a lot about the car of course, but it’s getting better and better all the time.”
In P2 Jolyon Palmer suffered a puncture pn the car but a very good turn around meant he was able to go back out later in the session. Palmer said “ We don’t know what caused the puncture and it was frustrating to lose so much track time.”
“We thought we might not be able to get out again after the car was recovered, however my crew was able to do a fantastic job to repair the damage so I’m thankful for those laps at the end of the session.”
Based on P2 expect once again Mercedes to have the slight advantage through the rest of the weekend. This session will be interesting as we will get a ture indication of how close Ferrari to Mercedes. Watch out for Verstappen as he will be out to impress tomorrow