Red Bull confirmed their position as pre-race favourites with a strong showing in free practice this morning, topping the first session before weather concerns troubled their second practice running.
Whilst they were overhauled in the second session by the McLaren, the team were pleased with their overall place in tricky stop-start conditions.
Mark Webber at his home Grand Prix was optimistic for the rest of the weekend and admitted that practice was hard at times with the 'Melbourne showers' playing a part in lap times.
He explained: “We had some Melbourne showers at the end of P2, which are always pretty tricky round here, but in general it was a pretty good day for us.
“We've still got some work to do; there are some quick guys out there. It was good to finally try the tyres out on this circuit and I had a go with everything new on the car.
“McLaren look quick, but with Ferrari you can never tell, as they always run a bit more fuel on a Friday.”
Defending champion Sebastian Vettel was quietly confident of his chances but agreed with his team-mate that the weather had caused him trouble in second practice.
He revealed: “It was an exciting start to the season, as there's always a lot going on in Melbourne. We were able to complete a lot of laps today, but the weather has been a bit difficult.
“It starts raining, but then goes dry again, which doesn’t make it that easy to test different things.
“Despite that, I think we got a good idea as to where we are compared to our competitors. All in all I think we can be pleased, it seems we are not too bad, but we have to wait and see.”