Rain in both Friday practice sessions at the Albert Park circuit on Friday resulted in team’s unable to gather much data on the overall performance of the Pirelli Medium and Soft compound tyres.
Drivers opted instead to run the intermediate tyre however at times during the day it was dry enough for the Medium of Soft compound tyre and not wet enough for Intermediate tyres.
In Free Practice One the top three of Hamilton, Kvyat and Ricciardo completed their runs on new Soft compound tyres, while in the second session the top three of Hamilton, Hulkenberg and Raikkonen used a mixture with Hamilton and Raikkonen setting their fastest times on new intermediate rubber while Hulkeberg used intermediates. Speaking following the session, Pirelli Motorsport Director Paul Hembery commented by saying:
A bit of a washout – that’s how we can describe today I think! Most of the running was on intermediates this afternoon, which we are unlikely to see being used in the race, although there’s a chance they will be needed again tomorrow. While nobody really learned a lot today, there was some slick tyre running this morning, and we came close to the crossover point, enabling some useful data to be gathered about the intermediate. What this all means is that a season full of far-reaching changes has got off to an even more unpredictable start than expected, which opens up even more variables for the rest of the weekend. We’ll have to wait a little bit longer now to find out the true effect of the 2016 tyre regulations.