An update from Free Practice in Montreal as the track action kicks off at the Canadian Grand Prix.
The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has got plenty of thrills. The hairpin, framed by close, tall grandstands that provide a fantastic atmosphere, is always the scene of great overtaking moves, and of course there's the infamous Wall of Champions, the exit of the final chicane that frequently brings the most elevated stars crashing to earth.
Montreal is one of the season's great race destinations, featuring a circuit that harks back to the golden age, a city that provides a vast and varied playground and racing that is often right at the edge of human and mechanical limitations.
The first 90 minutes of running at the Canadian Grand Prix in Free Practice One saw Max clock up 19 laps with a fastest lap of 1:14.861 while Daniel logged a best time of 1:15.441 over 23 laps. Lewis Hamilton took the timesheet topspot with a 1:13.809.
It proved to be a challenging Free Practice Two for the Bulls as a suspected mechanical engine issue limited Daniel's time on track, while a gearbox issue saw Max stop on track. Nevertheless, the pace from the Bulls was encouraging as Max took P5 with a 1:13.388 from his 25 laps while Daniel's 1:15.072 saw him in P15 from his 8 laps of running. Topping the timesheets in FP2 was Kimi Raikkonen with a 1:12.935.
In Free Practice Three the Bulls encouraging pace continued as Max took P4 with a 1:12.965 from 22 laps. Daniel's 1:13.545 was good enough for P8 from his 35 laps. Topping the timesheets was Sebastian Vettel with a 1:12.572.
Assessing his Friday, Max said: "It wasn't the cleanest of days but in terms of performance I think we were OK. Before the stoppage in P2 it was a positive session, we felt like we had good pace and weren't far off the top four. This is nice to see at this track as it usually is not one of our favourites, we can be pleased with that I guess.
"The short runs were good and the updates seem to have given us something a little extra, with such long straights here it is always going to be difficult for us. We are not yet fast enough to beat the top two teams so we do our best to finish fifth and optimise what we have. We still need to investigate what the issue with the car was but I'm sure the boys will have it ready to go again tomorrow."
Daniel said: "A bit of an uneventful day to be honest as I didn't get a whole lot of running. We had a bit going on this morning and then had an engine issue this afternoon. The positive is that Max's pace on the ultra softs looked pretty good, so hopefully we'll learn a bit more from their set up tonight and then push on for tomorrow. I doubt we got a lot of long run data today but at least Max did some good short runs.
"For me, we'll take a little bit from today but we obviously didn't get too many uninterrupted flying laps. But that's okay, because I've driven this track before so I'll just get into it tomorrow morning."