Daniel Ricciardo has rated his Friday practice getting up to speed at Paul Ricard as “a pretty good day” but is wary of the speed Lewis Hamilton produced to top the times for Mercedes.

The Australian driver ended FP2 second fastest, just 0.028s faster than Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen, but a sizeable seven-tenths of a second off of timesheet-topper Hamilton for Mercedes.

Ricciardo feels despite a slight misdirection with the required downforce levels compared to optimum straight-line speed set-up with his RB13 at the new F1 track for 2018 his team enjoyed a strong Friday practice but concedes the gap to Hamilton is a worry.

“Lewis’ time was pretty quick. Hopefully they used it [engine upgrade] today, if they’re going to go quicker then it looks like everyone is chasing them this weekend,” Ricciardo said. “I guess for them it’s working.

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“It was actually a pretty good day for us. I think across both cars we went a different direction this afternoon so I think now we have a pretty good understanding of what to do.

“I know our laptimes are similar, myself and Max, but I think from that we can still gather a direction with levels of downforce and things like this. Not a bad day, obviously, Lewis was pretty quick that’s a bit of a shame, he obviously did a good lap. Generally, for us I think we did a good day.”

Ricciardo is targeting a return to the podium after missing out in Canada to teammate Verstappen as he looks to close the gap to the F1 world championship leaders at the French Grand Prix.

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