As has been the case throughout the season, it was a promising Friday for Scuderia Ferrari.
FP1 was almost a non-event due to the wet conditions. In FP2, though, it was dry and they could unleash their full pace.
On the medium tyre in FP2, Charles Leclerc was the fastest driver as he pipped teammate Carlos Sainz to top spot.
However, he couldn’t improve on the soft tyre as he couldn’t find the sweet spot like he did on the medium.
“A tricky day,” he said. “I mean, the first session, we didn’t get much data from it, just because of the weather and very few laps, and on the second, in FP2, we had quite a bit of problems on my side, so hopefully tomorrow we can have a bit of a cleaner day and have things going our way.
“I don’t know if there were radio messages on the coverage but overall, just some power unit things that were making it very difficult to drive. But it’s fine. I mean, it’s small set-ups more than problems, so we will modify it for tomorrow.
“With the softs, it was very, very tricky again for some reason. It didn’t feel as good as on the medium and again, we’ve had those small issues that weren’t easy also to manage.
“But overall, I think the performance is in the car, so this is positive, and hopefully again tomorrow we can put everything together and have a good day.”
On the other side of the garage, Carlos Sainz did manage to get a decent lap in on the softs – albeit running very wide at Copse – to end up quickest from Hamilton and Norris.
The performance is of no surprise to the Spaniard.
“I think we are expecting to be competitive at every circuit this year, because the car is certainly a very competitive car, as is the Red Bull, as is the Merc when there’s a bit less bumps, and there’s a bit more high-speed, so yes, I think we all knew coming into this weekend that it was going to be a tight battle and again, it looks like it’s the same here.”
As for tomorrow? He’s confident.
“It will be interesting to see; today on the soft tyre we were certainly pretty competitive so there’s no reason why not to think that tomorrow we can do a good job,” he concluded.