• Bahrain Grand Prix - FP1

McLaren satisfied after FP1

ESPNF1 Staff
April 20, 2012 « Force India misses FP2 in order to leave circuit early | Race pace looks reasonable - Rosberg »
Lewis Hamilton was quickest by 0.305s but only completed 11 laps © Getty Images
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McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh said that both drivers were "reasonably happy with the balance" of their cars after FP1 in Bahrain.

Lewis Hamilton was fastest in the first session, with Jenson Button fifth as the two drivers only completed 25 laps between them. Whitmarsh explained to Sky Sports that the lack of running was due to the track conditions and the programme pre-allocated by the team, but that the initial work had gone well.

"It's a dusty circuit so everyone waits a little bit and you only try to run with one set of tyres," Whitmarsh said. "We were just looking at general overall vehicle balance and just starting to do our setup programme which we'll really start in earnest this afternoon. Both drivers are reasonably happy with the balance, I think we need to work on traction and grip here but that's really why we've got the data from this morning and we can be ready this afternoon."

Whitmarsh admitted the main focus would be the tyres, as it had been this season, and admitted the differing styles between the two drivers meant it was a crucial factor in their respective performances.

"What we've got are very interesting dynamics in this team, and that is that Jenson is very experienced, super smart, great at using his tyres. In truth he's working and operating a team but he really wants to beat his team-mate. I think Lewis is learning as well, but there's no doubt this year has been about tyre pressures, tyre temperatures, really understanding how you get the best out of the tyre, how you get them up to temperature, how you really get the grip at both ends and then of course how you make the tyres last during a weekend."