Lewis Hamilton says it’s fantastic to see a few teams get closer to Mercedes compared to last year, not just Red Bull which has become a constant threat to world champions, and he thinks that puts them under extra pressure.
Mercedes was the fastest in both free practice sessions, and while Bottas was the fastest in the first Hamilton was the fastest in the second practice while Leclerc in Ferrari was less than two tenths behind the fastest time.
In addition to Ferrari, the drivers of Alpine and AlphaTauri also looked very good in yesterday's training sessions, while McLaren focused on evaluating the new aerodynamic parts they brought to Barcelona and did not get the most out of one fast lap.
“It was a good start to the weekend, the track is great and our car balance is similar to last race,” said Hamilton, who has celebrated in Spain in the last four years and started first three times. “It looks pretty close, but I think we have good speed.
We understand our car and we know in which direction we have to go in terms of balance. ”
Changes and progress
"We've made some changes to the car, I don't know if the car has gotten better, but we've definitely discovered some things and we'll analyze all the data to have even better settings tomorrow."
"It's amazing to see the progress made by McLaren, Ferrari, and Alpine, not just Red Bull, and that puts us under extra pressure." Bottas was the fastest in the first and second fastest in the second practice, on the track where in 2019 he won a fantastic pole position with more than six-tenths of an advantage over Hamilton.
“It was a solid day, the feeling in the car wasn’t bad and we didn’t have big balance issues so I’m pretty happy,” Bottas said. “On a soft tire, it will be crucial to warm up both the front and rear end for one lap because the differences will be very small.
Tonight we will go through the usual processes and fine tune the car as best we can because we know that every millisecond will be crucial in qualifying. ” "Everyone is very close to each other and Ferrari looked pretty strong, but we need to focus on our performance and get the most out of this package."
Most predict that this year there will be a race between Red Bull and Mercedes who really have great drivers and cars. We will wait a while to see if a third team can show up that could compete with them