Interlagos, Friday November 5
P1 – 24 laps – 1m12.845s (+0.517s) – 3rd
P2 – 33 laps – 1m12.656s (+0.688s) – 4th
“The car felt good today – I’m getting everything out of it – but I still felt it needs just a little more downforce.
“Still, I’m optimistic for qualifying tomorrow – especially if it rains, which I’m told it probably will. This year’s car is much better than last year’s car in the wet, so I feel confident that if it rains we should be able to fight for the front row.
“In terms of pure pace in the dry, the Red Bull looks very quick. But a number of factors will play a part in deciding how things pan out in the next two grands prix – weather, engines, reliability – so it’s all still up for grabs.”
P1 – 24 laps – 1m13.267s (+0.939s) – 4th
P2 – 33 laps – 1m13.206s (+1.238s) – 7th
“We spent today playing about with the balance. The car feels good in high-speed corners, but we still need to work on the front end of the car in low-speed corners.
“Towards the end of today’s running, on higher fuel, the car felt pretty good, which was encouraging.
“The weather forecast says it looks like rain tomorrow, so it’ll be interesting to see how that affects qualifying.
“I think our race car should be good – and that’s important because Sunday should be dry. Hopefully, our race set-up won’t be too compromised by the anticipated wet conditions in qualifying tomorrow.”
Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes
“Today was an extremely busy day of testing for us as we gathered data on a number of new components, including floor modifications and a selection of rear wings.
“Both drivers reported that the car wasn’t as well-balanced as they’d ideally like, but we feel we have enough data to be able to effect some very positive changes ahead of running tomorrow.
“Neither Jenson nor Lewis was able to set optimal lap times during their Option-tyre runs, owing to a yellow flag adversely affecting their running. However, our long-run pace looks particularly encouraging and is a very good basis for Sunday’s race.
“In the meantime, the weather forecasters are predicting an 80 per cent chance of rain tomorrow – and that will inevitably have some influence over some of the decisions we take this evening – but we believe we’re heading in the right direction for the rest of the weekend.”