McLaren endure woeful day of testing

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Bottas, on softs, was two-tenths slower than the Ferrari driver before handing over the Mercedes W09 to Lewis Hamilton for the afternoon.

"The conditions this afternoon were quite tricky due to the wind, so the running we did wasn't so representative".

Issues relating to the battery and hydraulics caused the Woking based team to lose valuable time as they tried to solve the issues, but despite the breakdowns, Boullier says the team is not too concerned by the problems and that these troubles are expected to come during testing.

However, McLaren managed to get him out for a couple of installation laps just before the chequered flag fell for lunch.

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McLaren endured a hard session, however, as Stoffel Vandoorne came to a halt on just his fourth morning lap, his MCL33 vehicle suffering a sudden power cut.

"It was a good day's work", said Vettel after completing 171 laps, the most of any of the 13 drivers who took to the track. The auto then remained in the garage until the final minutes of the morning session when Vandoorne returned to the track to complete three further laps.

The two-time F1 world champion's MCL33 appeared to have dropped oil or fluid on the circuit on the exit of Turn 6 as track marshals put down cement dust to soak the substance before doing the same where Alonso had stopped his vehicle on the escape road.

The American tried to put on a courageous face, but he will be concerned by what he has seen so far this winter with just three further days of testing before the season gets under way in Melbourne on March 25.

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Red Bull's junior team was limited to just 54 laps after not taking to the track at all for the final three and a half hours. But later in the day Verstappen also caused a red flag when his Red Bull stopped at Turn 1 with a battery problem after exiting the pits.

"Those problems could have affected any of the three teams, so of course it's an issue for us", Bell said to ESPN F1.

"Today I think we're about to fine tune, but the problem we had with the leak is nothing related to that". "It's the right thing to do, we have found some that are not fit for objective and that's great".

McLaren are hoping to return to the sharp end of the grid this season following their decision to divorce from Honda and switch to Renault power, but their winter campaign has been blighted by a series of reliability issues.

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