Renault driver Jolyon Palmer had a troublesome day in Melbourne, as the Briton only completed ten laps over the two sessions. His car hit problems in the first session, limiting him to six laps. However, in the second session, the rear slipped away from him as he came onto the start finish straight causing him to spin into the barrier and heavily damage the car.
"Unfortunately it was a pretty short day for me, in terms of time I spent in the car," he said. "We had a small technical problem in FP1 and in FP2 I flew off the track. In addition, the car was unfortunately quite damaged. I have no idea what happened, suddenly I just lost the car. We will study the data and look to find a reason. I hope tomorrow I'll have more time on the job."
Teammate Nico Hülkenberg drove over fifty laps today and ended both sessions in ninth place: "It was a nice first Friday of the season and we have a reasonable basis to go with for the rest of the weekend. We have made progress with the balance and set-up, and we understand the tyres now even better. The RS17 is feeling well at Albert Park and we can still take a step forward for tomorrow."