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Mercedes hail 'step forward' as Hamilton shines in practice

Andrew Shovlin has provided an update on the progress made by Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton having shown strong pace during Friday at Silverstone.

Mercedes engineer Andrew Shovlin believes Lewis Hamilton's impressive Friday at the British Grand Prix shows that the team have made a step forward. The seven-time World Champion - and eight-time Silverstone winner - finished second fastest in both FP1 and FP2 on a wet-dry day on home soil. His impressive showing came after his team bolted multiple upgrades onto their W13 as they look to close the gap between themselves and the Red Bull and Ferrari cars. "It does look like we've made a step forward because we're not normally up near the top on a Friday," Shovlin confidently told Sky Sports F1 . "I suspect there will be a bit more to come from Ferrari and a bit more to come from Red Bull. But in the long run work, it was quite encouraging as well. "Normally we see a half a second gap, maybe even seven or eight tenths, to their faster teams on a long run: didn't look like it was there."

Shovlin happy with Mercedes' aggressive start to the weekend

Shovlin says Mercedes are learning from both their good and bad weekends, with their impressive Friday at Silverstone helping to team to realise what works, not only what doesn't. The team will now look to protect their car ahead of qualifying, having decided against making any drastic changes, as they have been seen to have done at recent Grands Prix. "I think what we've learned is that taking big steps going into qualifying is not a great idea, because if you get it wrong you're saddled with it through qualifying and through the race," he continued. "We were pretty aggressive with how we started here and there might be a little bit more to come. "What is encouraging is not so much the circuit working for us, it's that there are circuits where the car works well. And given that we just had three pretty bumpy, low-speed street circuits, we've understood why we were struggling there a bit. "We know why the car is good here and we know why it's bad there, and we can try and improve it."