Daniel Ricciardo believes the Formula 1 teams now have a much better grasp of handling the new Pirelli tires in mixed conditions, following another wet morning at Barcelona today.
The Toro Rosso reserve driver was on board the STR6 for the first half of today's running, which was mostly wet then dried enough for a run on slicks before the mid-day break. When asked about gathering data on the crossover point between the Pirelli inter and the slick, he said: "This morning was another big step forward with that.
"On day one when it was wet in the morning, Jaime [Alguersuari] used the inters and a few different compounds of slick, and they got an idea of the crossover. Today we tried the extreme, the inter and the slick, and I think that confirmed what the team discovered from day one. They seemed content with results so I think it was a productive day for that."
Ricciardo was one of the first drivers to switch to slicks and was fastest in the latter part of the session, until Lewis Hamilton edged ahead.
"I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn't as treacherous as I thought it would be," Ricciardo said. "After two laps I was already down to respectable times compared to the inters, so we stayed out longer than we planned because we saw the slick was fine, and lasting. The track was improving and the times were coming down so we stayed out pretty much to the end [of the morning session].
"It was good to get a run on slicks even though the track wasn't ideal. I got to try a few different compounds, so what was looking like it might be an unproductive morning with the weather, I still took something from it and the team did as well."