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Nico Rosberg has dominated the first day of track action for the German Grand Prix at the Hockenheimring, putting a clear four tenths between himself and team-mate Lewis Hamilton in second free practice.

With the home hope setting a scorching pace in FP1 to head up the timesheets by 0.326s, he swelled that advantage to 0.394s over title rival Hamilton as Mercedes once again exerted a sizeable advantage over the competition out of the box.

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Even so, his 1min 15.614s lap would prove marginally slower than he managed in FP1 as cloud cover made for cooler afternoon temperatures.

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Having ended the first session more than a second adrift of the top spot, Sebastian Vettel clawed the gap down to a more threatening six tenths of a second in the Ferrari - exactly two tenths behind Hamilton -, while Red Bull's Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen were also evenly-matched in third, fourth and fifth, eight tenths behind to top.

Having persevered with soft tyres in FP1, Force India revealed more of its pace in FP2 on the super-soft rubber with Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez lifting into the top ten in seventh and ninth, the pair surrounded by Fernando Alonso in eighth and Jenson Button in tenth. The latter would end his session in the medical centre after complaining of an irritant whilst driving, though the exact cause has not been communicated.

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Carlos Sainz and Daniil Kvyat followed up in 11th and 12th for Toro Rosso, ahead of Valtteri Bottas, the Finn - along with 15th place team-mate Felipe Massa - unable to make an impression for a struggling Williams. Romain Grosjean was 14th fastest, but completed only 12 laps after ongoing technical issues in the Haas.

F1's first visit to Hockenheim since 2014, the German venue would prove tricky to master in the context of the new 'zero tolerance' approach to track limits. Indeed, with the limit of the tricky T1 right-hander being exceeded 93 times in FP1, there was a similar struggle in FP2 for drivers to get it right into the bend.

By rule of averages, the FP1 tally is approximately four warnings per driver - enough to land them a penalty in a race scenario. It is, however, worth pointing out that drivers exceeded track limits significantly during Hungarian GP practice but largely refrained come race day when the penalties are officially enforced.

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