The first action of the weekend was a bit of a write-off as far as meaningful action goes. More than just the usual cleaning of the circuit and laying down of rubber, the drivers also had to contend with a damp track following an uncharacteristic downpour on Friday morning.
Sebastian Vettel set the quickest time once the circuit dried towards the end, but it was too early to read much into the six-tenth advantage he held over Lewis Hamilton.
McLaren's hopes of challenging for victory escalated later on Friday afternoon when Hamilton went fastest, a quarter of a second ahead of Vettel.
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Matt Beer started freelancing for Autosport.com in the first week of its existence in 1999, and spent the next decade-and-a-half dovetailing increasing amounts of time contributing to it with UK national reporting, driver and team PR, freelance for organisations including ITV, BMW, Autocourse and the FIA Institute and a parallel career co-managing award-winning Edinburgh Festival Fringe theatres.
He stopped being stubborn and became Autosport.com's deputy editor in April 2014. Matt also oversees Haymarket's talent development programme for emerging motorsport writers and escapes to cover Formula Ford 1600 races whenever possible.