George Russell finished the opening day of practice at the British Grand Prix down in eighth place overall, eight tenths behind pace-setter Carlos Sainz.
Mercedes were left counting the positives after a strong start to the race weekend, but Russell's day was not without its problems.
The home hero spent most of the second hour struggling to make his tyres work over the course of one lap, rather than focusing on race pace.
But the 24-year-old is confident that the team already have their pace under control as he targets a maiden home podium.
"We need to understand why our race pace is so much stronger than our qualifying pace," Russell told media, including RacingNews365.com.
"McLaren are really strong over a single lap. We're just making the tyres work on one lap but we think that over the course of the race we're in a pretty good window."
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You can't just put all your eggs in one basket, says Russell
Russell continued: "It's obviously always a balance. You can't just put all your eggs in one basket for Sunday. Where there are very positive signs, they’re still not the finished product."
The young Mercedes driver explained that a lot of the issues had to do with the nature of the Silverstone track – but the good news was that, while there was some bouncing, there was no actual porpoising.
"It's a very different circuit here in Silverstone. We knew that through the corners that are high-speed, there was going to be bit of pounding on our heads. That turned out to be true," he said.
"Through Copse and Maggots and Becketts the car is bouncing around. So we need to try and understand that but there is no porpoising. So as I said there are positives and we just need to dive into it and really maximize things."
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