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What we learned from Friday at the British Grand Prix

What we learned from Friday at the British Grand Prix

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What we learned from Friday at the British Grand Prix

What we learned from Friday at the British Grand Prix

Mercedes were back at the top of the timesheets by the end of Friday at the British Grand Prix, but it was Valtteri Bottas rather than home favourite Lewis Hamilton who took the honours.

After a chastening Austria weekend, by the Silver Arrows' lofty standards, they resumed familiar territory at Silverstone.

Not everything went as panned for Mercedes, however, with Lewis Hamilton struggling for rhythm through much of Friday's running.

There was more good news for McLaren, while Pierre Gasly hit a bit of form to defy his recent critics.

Mercedes mighty again

Hamilton and Bottas were separated by just 0.069 seconds at Silverstone, the Brit losing it into Chapel on what looked like being a likely fastest lap.

More encouraging for Hamilton was a long-run advantage over the Finn, although his numerous excursions off the track in both sessions suggest the Brit is still to truly get to grips with things.

Ferrari were just two tenths off Mercedes' one-lap pace, with Charles Leclerc getting the better of Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel won here last year, but the Scuderia still need to find greater pace through the twistier parts of the circuit, despite looking strong – as expected – in the flat-out first sector.

The Gasly comeback starts now

Gasly has had to deal with plenty this year as he has struggled to find top form at Red Bull, fighting off rumours that he could be replaced sooner rather than later.

The Frenchman topped FP1 thanks to a late fast run, but kept his efforts up in the second session as well, going quicker than Max Verstappen over a single lap.

Verstappen was another driver to see his flying effort curtailed by a trip beyond the track limits and the Dutchman also struggled to get his soft tyres turned on, giving Red Bull plenty to work on after their victory in Austria last time out.

Renault going backwards again

As is beginning to become something of a trend, Renault followed up a decent FP1 by dropping out of the top 10 altogether by the end of the second session.

To make matters worse for the French team, Daniel Ricciardo suffered a power outage at the end of FP2.

Thankfully for Renault, the Australian was running an older-spec power unit so the issue should not cause him grief over the weekend.

McLaren once again showed Renault what it perhaps ought to be capable of, with Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz placing sixth and eighth respectively in FP2, with Verstappen's Red Bull splitting them.

The British team had not expected recent strong displays to be replicated at Silverstone but they are once again the team to beat in the midfield, it appears.

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