Mercedes pair encouraged by Friday form
10 November 2017 – Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas expressed optimism over Mercedes' start to the Brazilian Grand Prix after the pair finished 1-2 in both practice sessions on Friday.
Having wrapped up both titles, Hamilton and Mercedes vowed to push on across the final two rounds, and comfortably led the way at Interlagos.
Hamilton clocked the quickest ever lap of the circuit during FP1, posting a 1:09.202, and retained his position in FP2, despite his best time being over three-tenths off his earlier benchmark.
"It's been a good day," said Hamilton, who claimed victory in last year's rain-affected race at Interlagos.
"It was pretty exciting to come to the track with the cars being so much faster this year.
"It's physically more demanding than before which is great and it's obviously quite warm out there today.
"We got through the long runs and the short runs; unfortunately, the tyres don't really last very long, so you only get one or two laps on the short runs.
"Overall, we got through what we needed to do.
"We're in a decent position, but I think it could be quite close."
Bottas, meanwhile, believes Mercedes has a "good starting point" with its W08 for the remainder of the weekend.
"Initially in FP1 we did some aero tests, looking at some things we can improve for next year, and we now have some data to analyse from that," said Bottas, who trails Sebastian Vettel by 15 points.
"Otherwise, I think both the short runs and the long runs in both sessions looked positive for us as a team, so we have a good starting point for the weekend.
"Still, we were a little bit struggling to get the set-up right for each corner of the circuit.
"However, I was really enjoying this track and I'm looking forward to the weekend."