The champion of F1, Lewis Hamilton set the fastest time and his teammate at Mercedes, Nico Rosberg, was victim of an accident during the first tests in preparation for the Australian Grand Prix, kickoff the season.
Heavy rain showers in the morning and throughout the day have limited preparation time for the qualifying session on Saturday and the race on Sunday, to be held in the dry.
Hamilton set the fastest time when he took advantage of a short window to roll with tires for dry and he was again fastest in the second session when only the intermediate and rain tires were used.
Rosberg ran off track during the second session, when he accelerated too quickly at the exit of a corner and hit the concrete wall next to the runway, damaging the front wing of his Mercedes which ended session.
Rosberg became the first victim of the new regulations that prohibit several radio communications between the wells and the pilot, in order to encourage them to make their own decisions. The director Toto Wolff team said the team watched on monitors how the car felt on the wet track and decided that intermediate tires were not providing enough grip and should go to tires for the rain, but she could not notify the before the accident.
The first few laps of the session slicks offered a better idea of the true pace of the cars lap times recorded during the second training played on a wet track. Three teams – Williams, Sauber and Renault – have also not tried to make a fast lap in this session.
In the morning, Hamilton was ahead four tenths Kvyat (Red Bull). The Russian team mate and local favorite Daniel Ricciardo was third.
“The car felt good. Even if we could not run a lot today, we had two very constructive meetings, said Hamilton.
“I had the chance to do some laps in the dry to get an idea of the balance of the W07 on this circuit. I got to spend minimal time on the track thanks to the excellent work of the team that took me out of the garage in time. ”
McLaren has classified its two cars in the top 10, an indication that the team might revive after a disappointing 2015 season, the first marking the return of the series engine supplier Honda.
Force India and Toro Rosso have also experienced good times, which suggests good performance from them early in the season.
Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) has not recorded any lap in the first session but he offered the eighth position in the second, while teammate Kimi Raikkonen scored the third fastest time of the whole day.
The qualifying session could be very unpredictable, because few teams have been able to finalize their settings or to decide which of three gums available work best, or how long they will last.
The teams and drivers will also have to adapt to a new format for qualifying. The drivers will have a few minutes at each of the three sessions to achieve a time before, every 90 seconds, the slowest is eliminated.