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Spanish GP: Practice team notes - Pirelli

NEWS STORY
14/08/2020

Track temperatures exceeded 50 degrees today in the afternoon, but it was Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas who set the fastest time on the P Zero Red soft compound in the morning, comfortably improving the equivalent time from free practice last year. His team mate Lewis Hamilton went quickest in the afternoon's FP2 session, also on soft, but failed to beat Bottas's time from FP1.

With the three hardest tyres in the P Zero F1 range nominated for the very first Spanish Grand Prix to be held in August, the teams concentrated on understanding how the three compounds performed in these high temperatures, over both short and long runs with different fuel loads.

With the high temperatures set to persist tomorrow, teams also evaluated the possibility of going through Q2 on the medium compound.

While the top three in both sessions today were familiar - the two Mercedes, followed by the Red Bull of Max Verstappen - there were some strong performances in FP2 from Daniel Ricciardo's Renault in fourth and Romain Grosjean's Haas in fifth.

Mario Isola: "Tyre performance today was in line with our expectations, with the gaps between the compounds as we thought they would be. Today's work consisted of evaluation of all the different compounds, with assessment of the soft over the course of one lap as well as over a longer run probably being one of the keys to the strategy. So far, there's a distinct performance gap between the soft and the hard, which makes it important to understand how to maximise the soft, with some teams perhaps already looking at a potential two-stop strategy involving the soft, in order to capitalise on the extra speed. That analysis will continue overnight, but all three compounds look set to play an interesting role here as things stand, as we saw from the extensive running on each compound throughout free practice."

Check out our Friday gallery from Barcelona, here.

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