@Win: Ferrari will remember all too well that this was a similar story last year. All they need to focus on is themselves, not Mercedes or any other team.
@LeftenanRani: It was likely a low-fuel qualifying simulation on the soft tyre.
@Vel: It's a good point. Last year Mercedes was on a different level in Q3 and on Sunday afternoons.
@GeoffreySaid: You could argue McLaren are simulating a few of the races they're going to have this year....
Ocon, with a set of super-soft tyres, has moved up to third position for Force India.
@Vel: On current testing evidence, very highly!
Bottas is motoring through this race simulation at the moment. Magnussen is another man on a lot of laps, though his have been broken up much more sporadically - I don't think Haas are quite ready for a full race sim yet. But very impressive mileage so far.
@mfbull: I doubt it, Mercedes often does different programmes either side of lunch. The reason they alternate which driver goes before and after lunch each day is probably to ensure both get a completely fair run compared to the other.
@Gunlock: More Honda problems!
@Vel: Spain is ideal for a number of reasons. It's much warmer at this time of year here than Silverstone - living in the UK, I can tell you that the weather was utterly bleak before leaving. It's a good circuit for aerodynamic testing and it's cheap for the teams to fly to, making it the perfect compromise between all the factors you consider in a testing venue. Sepang would be incredibly expensive to visit. Mercedes pushed to visit Bahrain this year for testing but it was overwhelmingly opposed by other teams for obvious reasons.
@JerrinMathew: I blame fat fingers - that's been rectifiednow.
Bottas has pitted and returned to the track. There was a slow pit stop, looks like he had scuffed the right rear - but not enough to hamper Mercedes' race simulation.
@Motormouth: Bottas, Verstappen, Palmer, Giovinazzi.
@Sian: Sure, but doubt it's official race simulation with stints mapped out etc.
Laurence tells me the writing had been scraped off Bottas' right rear tyre before that stop, suggesting he'd grazed the wall at the pit lane entry on his way in.
@Nitish: Quite possibly, yes, but remember teams are likely to change those parts a lot over testing, so I imagine a lot of teams will have similar looking shark fins for their fastest laps later.
@Nitish: I know very little about her junior career. Some in the paddock say she's got a lot of potential, but her results don't quite reflect that. She will naturally bring good money to the team and a fair amount of exposure, attention etc - we'll have to see how she does in GP3 this year. As she told us earlier, that will determine whether she has a chance of a test role (or more) next year.
I'm taking over comms for a bit as Nate goes to retrieve his notepad from Sauber.