Recently, Lewis Hamilton had made suggestions that showed that his Brackley-based team had made a lot of progress in understanding how to better manage its long runs on Tuesday.
This was made evident on Wednesday when his Mercedes team mate, Valtteri Bottas completed more laps than anyone to continue those efforts.
Bottaswho was running without the T-wing,produced his best lap of 1m31.771s early in the session. Later on, he shifted to much longer stints in an attempt to try and unlock the reasons behind his own tyre struggles on Sundayin the Bahrain GP.
However, the first red flag of the day was brought out by Bottas just after 1pm when his car stopped on track at Turn 4.
Another team trying to unlock the potential it feels it has in its car is Force India. Its driver, Esteban Ocon was on hand to set the second fastest time of the morning before handing over his car in the afternoon to Sergio Perez.
The third fastest was Daniil Kvyatof Toro Rosso’s who came in no more than 0.071 seconds behind Ocon. Sebastian Vettel of the Ferrari team was the fourth fastest after being confined to the garage for a better part of the morning.
The team had wanted to use the day for an intense data logging programme. However, a change of settings revealed some issues with leaks in the car’s internal components.
Thus Ferrari had to remove the rear end of the SF70H so as to fix the problems. Remounting the engine, they let the German out again just a little after 1pm so as to allow him add to his morning tally of nine laps.
McLaren had finally been able to get a proper testing programme and Vandoorne was able to without trouble, complete almost 50 laps in the morning.