The first race day in the Japanese GP brought the Mercedes team dominance, with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas fastest both empty and full of fuel.

Both Mercedes racers dominated the top of the table on Friday’s free practice, with Max Verstappen closest to Bottas and Hamilton in the afternoon, trailing by just under three tenths of a second.

Both silver arrows were also the fastest in the race simulations the racers performed at the end of the second free training session. Mercedes W10 Advantage was especially pronounced in the introductory stint with the softest tire version, with Bottas and Hamilton lapping on average 6-7 tenths faster than Max Verstappen [Red Bull], while Charles Leclerc [Ferrari] losing almost a second per lap. .

The situation was a little more balanced in the second stint with a medium-hard mixture, at which Verstappen was approaching the fastest Hamilton at two tenths, and the Dutchman was even faster than Bottas. Charles Leclerc did not use the middle tire version in his simulation, while Sebastian Vettel used the softest mixture of Pirelli tires in the second part.

Unlike the Sochi race, Ferrari wasted far more time in curves, with only Vettel and Leclerc  to lost about three-tenths in the spoon section.

# F1 # JapaneseGP Automobile performances in low, medium, high-bustle corners & on the straights (= vitality restricted) compared to the fastest # Mercedes :
# Ferrari losing mighty in low & high-bustle areas but gains on the straights pic.twitter.com/ KNpjydSZ0F

– Petr Hlawiczka (@hlawiczka) October 11, 2019

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