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Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistFebruary 28, 2017

Mercedes flexed their muscles for the second consecutive day in Barcelona for Formula One testing, with Lewis Hamilton leading the standings after the morning session. 

Hamilton was imperious on Monday in the new W08 model and once again the Silver Arrows showed that they’re likely to be the dominant force once again in 2017. The Brit totted up an impressive 66 laps.

Elsewhere, McLaren were forced into an engine change, while Renault’s Jolyon Palmer was confined to the garage for almost the entirety of the session, with a late red flag and a subsequent extension allowing the team to eventually get him out on track for an installation lap.

The drivers will be back out for the afternoon session at 1 p.m. (GMT). Here are the final figures from the morning stint and a closer look at how the drivers continued their preparation for the 2017 campaign.


Morning Recap

The official Formula One Twitter feed provided the final standings from the morning runs in Barcelona:

For Mercedes, the session was another continuation of the good work done on Monday and a sign that they’re going to be the team to beat once again.

Hamilton was excellent in the morning in Barcelona.

Hamilton was excellent in the morning in Barcelona.Dan Istitene/Getty Images

Having posted the quickest lap time and 73 laps on Day 1 in the evening session, Hamilton was first to set a time on Tuesday and was quickly into his groove again, putting together trouble-free laps and slowly reducing the pace.

The Mercedes Twitter feed captured some footage of Hamilton in the new W08 model:

With the clock ticking down in the session, the Mercedes team decided to show off their raw speed, with Hamilton emerging for a dart on the supersoft compound and posting an impressive time of one minute, 28.983 seconds, the fastest recorded in Barcelona so far this week.

It was difficult to get a gauge on just how quick Mercedes were in comparison to their rivals, though. That’s because Kimi Raikkonen was on the medium tyre all morning in the Ferrari, while Red Bull’s Max Verstappen also opted not to utilise any of the quicker compounds.

As noted by Gianlu D’Alessandro, the Ferrari team were making a few technical adjustments in the morning:

For some of the other teams’ testing, the session wasn’t quite so straightforward. After issues with an oil system on Monday limited their running time, McLaren were having more reliability problems on Tuesday, this time with their engine, per BBC Sport’s Andrew Benson:

Sauber driver Antonio Giovinazzi also had to spend some time in the garage:

The most difficult morning was endured by Renault, though. Palmer was set to take to the cockpit for the team on Tuesday but was stranded for almost the entire four hours.

However, a late stop for Estaban Ocon meant a red flag and a subsequent extension. Palmer as a result, did manage to get behind the wheel for a couple of minutes.

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