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Mercedes restore order at top with Hamilton's win

17 May 2018

Vettel will hand over the driving duties to test driver Antonio Giovanazzi for Wednesday's second and final day of the test in Spain, but he feels it was important to test on Tuesday to try and understand just why Ferrari was not as quick as their rivals on race day in Spain last Sunday.

Bottas hit the front half an hour into the session, and later consolidated his position by setting his best lap of the morning using soft compound Pirellis.

Most teams took the opportunity to give their reserve driver sthe chance to shine, with the likes of Lando Norris (McLaren) and Jake Dennis (Red Bull) racking up 80 and 75 laps each.

Sebastian Vettel
GETTYSebastian Vettel on track during in-season testing

Speaking after his deserved victory at the Spanish Grand Prix, Hamilton told The Times: "I said I wanted to come and win in the way that I won, I was just glad I did it as planned. We had problems finding the right balance of the auto and we were struggling with the front tires".

The F1 bandwagon will roll into Monte Carlo for the Monaco Grand Prix on 27 May. They have reaped the rewards by winning the last two races, including their first one-two finish of the season in Spain last weekend. After that I was really surprised they didn't have the pace to keep up with me. Probably the key point of tomorrow is the weather, there is some rain around and if that happens I think the race is going to ve very different.

"I think in general it's a bit more downforce, it's good for me having the confidence to push at Turns 1, 2 and 3 and all the high-speed corners".

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Ferrari was forced to end Kimi Raikkonen's race early with a suspected engine issue.

"It's good to have the test to be able to compare", he said.

GP3 race victor Nikita Mazepin was fifth fastest in the Force India and completed 108 laps despite a vehicle issue in the morning.

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Vettel hinted that this was making the biggest difference between Mercedes, which won the race with Lewis Hamilton, and Ferrari throughout the weekend.

"It has emerged the FIA asked the team to run the new lights, which are in addition to the central rear light the cars already have, as they look to improve visibility for following drivers in wet conditions".

Many teams used junior drivers, defined as a driver who has completed two or fewer races, as required by F1 regulations for in-season testing. The Ferrari driver qualified and raced coolly ahead of the Red Bulls till he slowed mysteriously down and allowed those everrestless teammates to pass. Nicolas Latifi was the other driver on Pirelli duty, getting his second consecutive day in the Force India as a result.

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Mercedes restore order at top with Hamilton's win