Budapest - 25/07/2014
MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS kicked off the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend at the top of the time sheets, with Lewis Hamilton narrowly edging Nico Rosberg to top both practice sessions at the Hungaroring Circuit.
Lewis ended the day fastest, posting a best time of 1:24.482 on the soft tyres during the second session
Nico's best lap of 1:24.720 put him second fastest to complete a Silver Arrows 1-2
Both the medium and soft compound Pirelli tyres were used in each session
The team completed 134 laps today - equivalent to just under two race distances at the Hungaroring
A trouble-free day's running allowed the team to assess both tyre compounds and prepare for the weekend ahead
Drivers No. Chassis No. Practice 1 Practice 2
Lewis Hamilton 44 F1 W05 Hybrid/05 27 laps 1:25.814 P1 38 laps 1:24.482 P1
Nico Rosberg 6 F1 W05 Hybrid/04 31 laps 1:25.997 P2 38 laps 1:24.720 P2
Weather Clear, dry, hot
Temperatures Air: 23 - 28 °C Track: 40 - 57 °C
We struggled with poor grip on track today. I don't know if that's down to the tyres or the track itself but it was quite bad throughout both sessions. It's going to be important to get a good grid position tomorrow as it will be difficult to follow cars on this track and it's always tough to overtake here. We have some work to do overnight to ensure we get the best setup for the weekend as we're not fully comfortable with the car just yet, but our race pace looked okay. We'll have to look through the data to really know where we stand.
I was a bit surprised that we had the quickest car here today as I expected the Red Bulls to have gotten a bit closer again, so that's a really encouraging start to the weekend. The car feels great and is super quick in the corners, so overall I'm quite happy. I definitely still need to find some time and there is some setup work for me and my engineers to do tonight if we want to achieve that. But I'm confident that we can make it happen. Qualifying will be crucial here, as overtaking is not easy at this great track. We'll work hard as always during the evening and see what happens tomorrow.
It was great to re-join the team today after my short "break" in Vienna! There was no place I wanted to be more than with the guys and girls here in Hungary today and it felt good to be back at work. In that respect, it was great to see Lewis and Nico performing strongly on both single lap pace and over the long runs. This is a demanding circuit for many aspects of the car and we will still have work to do overnight to dial both set-ups into the circuit. But the initial indication on the relative performance was good. Now we need to properly analyse the situation in order to make sure we are in strong shape for tomorrow.
We enjoyed two trouble-free sessions today with both cars and had plenty of laps in which to do our homework for tomorrow and Sunday. Generally, the grip levels on track were low and we had to work to get the cars balance to the drivers' liking. But, as always on a Friday evening, there is still some margin for improvement here. This circuit traditionally sees among the highest track temperatures of the year and once again today they peaked at 57 degrees centigrade. In these conditions, the tyres were holding up well, which is a positive indication for the race on Sunday.