Jenson Button (FP1: 1m33.139s, 24 lap, 7th / FP2: 1m31.568s, 37 laps, 9th): “The car felt pretty good as soon as I drove out of the garage this morning.
“The Pirelli tyres are working very well here; obviously, the Option has much more grip than the Prime. It seems that the idea behind the two compounds is to give us a qualifying tyre that doesn’t last long – the Option – and a race tyre – the Prime.
It’s not a bad compromise, we just need to deal with the tyre not lasting too long on Sunday.
“We won’t be challenging the cars at the front this weekend, but it would be nice to be able to attack the teams who are normally immediately ahead of us.”
Sergio Perez (FP1: 1m33.456s, 18 lap, 10th / FP2: 1m32.086s, 36 laps, 14th): “I think it’s been our best Friday for a couple of races – partly because of the dry weather, but also because we got a useful amount of work under our belts.
“We’re still in the same situation as we were in last weekend – the potential of the car hasn’t changed dramatically – but I think we can fight tomorrow to get into Q3. That may still be hard, but that’s our target.”
Martin Whitmarsh, Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes: “We’ve made a little bit of progress with the car and can hopefully continue to improve it throughout the weekend.
Naturally, the majority of the day was spent learning about the new Pirelli tyres that we have for this weekend. Pirelli has changed the construction of the tyre – and it was good to see that it was a quiet day on the tyre front.
“Both drivers conducted a range of development runs in the morning, before spending the afternoon running a comparison test between the Prime and Option tyres, and undertaking longer runs using a heavier fuel-load.
“It’s clear that there’s a significant step in both performance and longevity between the two compounds – that will inevitably make for some interesting considerations during the race.”
Vodafone McLaren Mercedes