McLaren duo Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton were upbeat on Friday afternoon after their cars were consistently among the top runners in first and second practice.
Button topped the first session time sheets, with Hamilton a quarter of a second down in third, but the 2008 champion reversed the standings in practice 2, finishing fourth with Button fifth.
Reigning champion Button was optimistic after practice, however, telling reporters he was "happy" with the car and that his setup required only "tweaking" and "decision making in terms of which direction we take in terms of downforce."
"We're just trying out different levels of downforce, mostly for information," Button said. "I think other teams have done the same, it's just data-gathering and seeing what works around here."
Championship leader Hamilton, who lies three points ahead of Red Bull's Mark Webber going into this weekend, was similarly enthusiastic about the team's option for qualifying tomorrow, and noted that regardless of whether McLaren runs its F-duct on Sunday, the team will be strong.
"With and without the F-duct was pretty similar for us," Hamilton observed. We have two [downforce] levels, one is slower down the straights but quicker in the corners, and the other one is quicker down the straights but slower through the corners and they pretty much balance themselves out. Its pretty much deciding which one's better on high fuel and whether there's more potential in one setting than the other."
Both drivers noted that their main title challengers pose a strong threat this weekend.
"We expected them to be quite quick. There was a bit of a gap at one stage in P2 and then they caught up", Hamilton said. "It'll be a tough battle for me and Jenson against the rest, I think they've shown a quick pace, but I believe we can do it. Tomorrow will tell in terms of pace in P3 and qualifying."
Button agreed, adding: "[Red Bull] were quick this morning. We expected them to quick, what was more surprising was the start of [the second session] where we were eight tenths quicker than anyone.
"The long-run pace is good, the lower-fuel pace is good, there's still some areas where we're weak compared to other people and those are the areas we've got to look at."