Sebastian Vettel says Ferrari went flat out with its upgraded power unit straight away on Friday in Canada, but he thinks it is too early to accurately compare its encouraging long-run practice pace to that of Mercedes.
Ferrari spent three of its ten engine development tokens coming into this weekend's race and the talk in the paddock before FP1 was that it would not introduce the new engine on full power until Saturday morning. Vettel denied that was the case after matching Lewis Hamilton on a long run with supersoft tyres in the rain-affected afternoon session.
"No easing in, we went flat out straight away," Vettel said after finishing 0.3s behind Hamilton in FP2. "Obviously time is very valuable and you try to get as much information as soon as possible and I think everything seemed to be working as expected ... All in all we did the maximum today and now we have to look and try and understand as much as possible for tomorrow but also Sunday.
Mercedes dominated the morning session but Ferrari was much closer in the afternoon when the option tyre [supersoft] came into play. The four-time world champion thinks it is important to note the rain meant teams had to hurry through their programmes in the afternoon, something he suggested may have hidden some of Mercedes' performance.
"They are quick, we know that, anything else would be a surprise. Of course we would take it but I think we have to wait, it was a rushed programme for everyone and it's not so clear what everyone was doing in terms of fuel loads and stuff. We have to be cautious - I think we can still improve but let's see what happens tomorrow and particularly Sunday."
However, Vettel seemed happy with the upgrades Ferrari brought to the car and thought second and third for himself and team-mate Kimi Raikkonen in FP2 reflected a step forward.
"I think the stuff we have on the car seems to work. That was important. This morning we tried to prepare for the race, this afternoon moreorless there was only one run. Lap times don't really matter so much today, it's all about the feeling you've got in the car. We can still improve so let's hope we do the right choices for tomorrow."