Fernando Alonso set the pace in both practice sessions on Thursday ahead of this weekend's Monaco Grand Prix and then declared that there is still a lot more to come from the Ferrari F10.
Alonso finished second practice as the only man to break the 1 minute 15 second barrier, and his best effort, a 1m 14.904 seconds, left him 0.109 seconds up on Nico Rosberg's Mercedes.
Speaking after practice, he added that the main priority today was to get his Ferrari F10 set-up so he feels confident and really able to push around the 2.075 mile track, which will host the sixth round on the F1 2010 schedule on Sunday.
“It's only Thursday, so the main aim was to understand how the tyres work and get confident with the circuit,” Alonso confirmed. “On this track a major set up change might give you half a tenth, but trusting your driving can see you gain half a second.
“We therefore worked on finding the right feeling with the car and on making it easy to drive. There is still a lot of work to do and quite a margin for improvement.
“The track conditions will get better by Saturday, given that so many cars from the different categories will be running over the next couple of days. I hope that in two days time I will again find a well balanced car.
“I can understand that there could be a level of pessimism after the show of strength from Red Bull in Barcelona qualifying, but we know that here, having the right set-up can make more of a difference than pure aerodynamic downforce and we already have a good baseline, given that last year, Kimi [Raikkonen - who I replaced at the Scuderia for F1 2010] nearly took pole with a car that was far off the F10 in terms of its potential.”
Felipe Massa meanwhile was fourth overall in the sister car, his best time a 1m 15.120s. He had been fifth fastest in FP1 this morning.
The Brazilian, who struggled last weekend in Spain, was a lot happier with his car around the streets of Monte Carlo and he did 75 laps in total: “The situation is definitely very different to Barcelona. From one week to the next I have found a much more stable car which is easy to drive and has much more grip. I have to say I can only be happy with the F10 and the way things went today,” Massa stated.