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HUNGARIAN GP: FREE PRACTICE

An update from free practice at the Hungarian Grand Prix as the Bulls get up and running at the Hungaroring.

After Monaco, the Hungaroring is the least power-sensitive circuit of the year, with a much higher emphasis placed on downforce and chassis dynamics. Having won in Monaco, we’re highly motivated to put in an equally good performance here.

With set up especially crucial here in Budapest there was lot’s of work to be done on Friday. The Bulls made a positive start in Free Practice One with Daniel topping the time sheet at the end of the first session with a 1:17.613. The Aussie completing 30 laps in total.

Meanwhile Max completed 29 laps with a top time of 1:17.701 which was good enough for P3.

Free Practice Two saw Daniel leave the garage first as the searing sun continued to beat down on the Hungaroring. However, as the session continued cloud cover saw temperatures drop and thunderstorms threaten.

Those storms never materialised, as Max finished P2 completing 35 laps with a best time of 1:16.908. Daniel was just behind the Dutchman in P3 completing 36 laps with a best time of 1:17.061.

Saturday's Free Practice Three saw temperatures remain high, with partly cloud covered skies. Daniel finished the session P5 completing 11 laps with a time of 1:16.803. Max was close behind in P6 after completing 14 laps, with his quickest time a 1:16.946.

After Friday's free practice session, Daniel said:

“Today was a good day. I think this morning we started well and this afternoon we were also strong, and I think we have a good enough car to be on the front row. Over one lap I think we could still make some improvements, but the long run pace looks good and we’re all very close. I predicted that the top six would be tight this weekend, I think come tomorrow this will still be the case.

"I feel I can still improve my lap time, but so far it was a good start. I think both of the tyres (Ultrasoft and Soft) performed quite well today and even in the long runs they were holding up alright. I would probably say that the Ultras are my preference for tomorrow, but we’ll make a plan tonight and then we’ll see. Front row would be perfect, second alright, we just don’t want to be third row as it’s difficult to overtake here.” 

Following on from his Friday's sessions, Max said:

“To set a good lap time around this circuit you need a good balance, I felt we have that. The car was good but unfortunately we still lose a bit of time on the straights. I am not sure if the strengths in cornering will be enough to compensate for this, so we shall have to wait and see. I think we can still improve the setup of the car a little bit more and be quicker than our best lap today, if that will be enough for pole position I’m not sure.

"We are strong in sector 2 as you would expect as it is very tight and twisty. Qualifying will be important as it’s hard to overtake here so getting ahead early is vital. Another factor is tyre management and strategy, this will be important come the race so we will look into the data tonight in order to get an understanding before Sunday. Mercedes seemed to struggle on the Ultras a bit but I’m expecting them to get it together tomorrow as they usually do. It is also uncertain how much they gain with their power mode. In the long runs they already looked quite competitive.”