Speaking yesterday, Lewis Hamilton stressed that the configuration of what is now officially, and cumbersomely, dubbed Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya, would mitigate the advantage of Mercedes.
But even though mitigate does not mean eradicate, Friday practice suggests that not only is Mercedes still ahead, but its advantage is as big as ever.
"If you look at data, or you look at the GPS of other teams, their loss is in the latter part of the straights," said Lewis Hamilton. "You can reduce that significantly here so it should naturally, before everyone has put the upgrades on, be a closer gap I think.
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Edd Straw is Editor-in-Chief of Autosport, overseeing both print and digital versions of the brand. Edd has worked for Autosport since joining as a junior reporter in 2002. He became Editor in November 2014, having previously worked as National Editor, News Editor and Grand Prix Editor.
Originally from Guernsey in the Channel Islands, he joined Autosport shortly after graduating from university. He went on to cover a wide range of categories from club motorsport to the World Touring Car Championship and Le Mans to Formula 3 before switching to F1 full-time at the 2008 French Grand Prix. He continues to cover a range of international events in his position as Editor-in-Chief.
In his spare time, he was formerly a club racer whose abilities did not match his enthusiasm in a variety of categories.