Mercedes sets the pace in practice for Spanish GP

Mercedes sets the pace in practice for Spanish GP

Mercedes sets the pace in practice for Spanish GP

With the laps we put in I thought we would be more like a couple of tenths from pole, not six or seven, as our vehicle didn't feel too bad which is a little frustrating. Nobody looked like getting anywhere close to him, and barring a massive technical or mechanical failure, he never looked like losing; and nor did he really have very much to do. It's shifting a little bit too much, we set the auto up for this, then the tyres move that way or the track moves that way.

Hamilton managed to beat Bottas by just four hundredths of a second, but the Ferraris - so strong so far this year - couldn't get close and Vettel will start in third with Raikkonen alongside in fourth, with the Red Bulls of Verstappen and Ricciardo filling the third row. "We can still work on the vehicle and we should be stronger tomorrow". "We've got a lot of work to do for tomorrow, it'll be a tough race, but it's a good way to start the weekend".

"Hopefully we see some action and we take benefit from that". The two title favourites said they would have liked to have been consulted about the "comical" proposals, which are meant to encourage more overtaking. In 2009 we went "let's go less aerodynamics, better racing", then we said "the cars are too slow, let's go and put more aerodynamics and make them wider and more spectacular".

"I'm not trying to be amusing, but I genuinely have no idea what they are doing or what they've changed or what they've decided", Ricciardo said.

Crowd-favorite Fernando Alonso was sixth fastest with McLaren in the morning but was 12th in the second session. The duo were speaking at the post-qualifying press conference on Saturday where the Briton had just taken pole position for the Spanish Grand Prix.

The team had to make some modifications to Kubica's vehicle because the Polish driver doesn't have full movement of his right hand.

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After making a mistake in the first corner on his first Q3 run on the super-soft, Vettel switched to the soft compound for his second run and improved his lap time with a much cleaner lap. Sergei Sirotkin was back in the vehicle for the afternoon run.

Stroll almost hit the tire barriers after going off the track with about a half-hour left in the first session.

"We want to push the boundaries and the limits", said Hamilton. The conditions were very tricky out there, the track was unpredictable and it was unclear which tyre to go with.

Brendon Hartley of Toro Rosso and Romain Grosjean of Haas were among those who went into the gravel in the morning.

Romain Grosjean, who crashed under the safety vehicle in Azerbaijan, was the first to face trouble in the afternoon session, losing control of his Haas and getting stuck on the gravel.

Raikkonen went off at Turn 4 and had to recover through the gravel trap, but shortly after rejoining suffered a power unit problem on the run to Turn 10.

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