Formula 1

“This was our best Friday for a few races” – Mercedes’ Andrew Shovlin

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Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

The Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team enjoyed arguably their best Friday of the season so far, with both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell amongst the pacesetters at the British Grand Prix.

Hamilton appeared incredibly strong on the opening day at the Silverstone International Circuit, after finishing both the wet Free Practice One and dry Free Practice Two in second-place. The seven-time World Champion was just over a tenth behind the best time of the day, but admitted that there is still more performance to extract from the W13.

After not setting a lap in the morning session, Russell focused on long runs in the afternoon, ending the day in eighth-place, The British driver was just under a second behind Carlos Sainz Jr, who topped the opening day.

Russell appeared stronger on long runs than short, with Hamilton being at a good level over both distances. However, porpoising was again an issue for the team, with Hamilton in particular suffering from the issue through the corners.

Mercedes’ Andrew Shovlin discussed the team’s opening day performance, and whether this weekend’s upgrades are working as planned.

“It’s great to be back at Silverstone and fantastic to see the grandstands so packed. This was our best Friday for a few races. We’ve still got a lot to improve but the car is working much better at this track than the last few street circuits. It’s really hard to evaluate whether the updates are doing exactly what we’d expect, especially in the windy conditions, but we’ve not seen anything worrying so we’ll continue with this specification for the rest of the weekend.

“George had a trickier session than Lewis but we had the Hard tyre on his car for the start of the second session and the double compound step made it difficult for him to get the most out of the Soft. Saying that, his long run pace was encouraging. Lewis put in a strong lap on the Soft compound but we expect the fast teams to have plenty to come tomorrow so we need to work hard to iron out a few of the balance and bouncing issues. Lots of work to do overnight but a reasonably encouraging start to the weekend.”

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