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Barcelona Test Notes 10-03: Mercedes

NEWS STORY
10/03/2017

Mercedes completed 107 laps of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on the final day of 2017 pre-season testing in Spain, taking total winter testing mileage for the new F1 W08 EQ Power+ to 1,096 laps - 5,102 km.

Valtteri emerged for his first run at 09:05, completing 53 laps on his final morning of testing before Melbourne. The Finn's total lap count of 628 across the eight day winter programme is the highest of any driver. Lewis took over in the cockpit after the hour-long lunch break, adding another 54 laps to his tally in the afternoon.

Today's programme focused on further set-up work and tyre analysis ahead of Melbourne.

Valtteri Bottas: I got in a reasonable amount of laps on my last morning in the car and leave testing feeling confident and ready to race. I feel that as a team we have been able to improve how we work together, that we have a great spirit and real will to win.

It's been so nice over these past two weeks to see how we operate as a group, both on and off the race track. Thanks to everyone in Brackley and Brixworth for creating this beautiful package. I hope we can extract the maximum from it straight from the word go in Melbourne.

We've been testing lots of things, so it's going to take a long time to analyse everything that we've done. I've had a massive learning curve over these eight days and that will continue but I can't wait for the start lights to go out in Melbourne.

Lewis Hamilton: It's been a busy winter for us. I don't remember how it was last year but this felt like a good couple of weeks. We're working together better than ever as a team and Valtteri has done great to blend in and do a solid job. We've had our up and down days with the car, learnt a lot from that and made plenty of changes. I'm happy with what we've gained knowledge-wise and feel confident we got everything we needed from this test to go out and fight in Melbourne.

The others seem quick, so it looks like we have a good battle on our hands. Ferrari have been doing a fantastic job. I think there's more to come from them but their pace here has really been spectacular. I don't know if Red Bull had their full package here. Usually they bring that to the first race but they're definitely still up there and I expect a serious fight with both of those teams. I've never wished to dominate. Of course, I want a car that I can go out and fight for a Championship with - but for the fans it's best when there's multiple teams fighting for it.

I just heard about John Surtees. To end the day with that kind of news is very sad. He was a legend of the sport - a lovely guy who did so much. It's a shock to everyone. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

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