Date: 28th February 2017 at 8:24am
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The 2017 Formula One World Championship season is officially under way.

All ten teams have now released their new challengers on to the same track, have shared a paddock and the circuit together and they’ve all began to establish their new pecking order.

Lap times at this stage of pre-season are only an indicator however, so do not expect the season to play out based on times from Monday.

That said it does look rather good for Mercedes, as Lewis Hamilton set the fastest time of the day during the afternoon of a 1minute 21.765s.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was only a tenth off that time, with Felipe Massa’s Williams within three tenths.

The fourth fastest driver of the day was somewhat of a surprise as it was Kevin Magnussen for Haas.

Daniel Ricciardo for Red Bull Racing rounded off the top five.

Another good sign for Mercedes was the mileage that the team completed.

Whilst all the other teams stuck to just one driver on day one, Mercedes split their running with Valterri Bottas driving in the morning and Hamilton in the afternoon.

That meant Mercedes completed a total of 152 laps of Barcelona’s 2.889 mile Circuit de Catalunya.

With Bottas and Hamilton completing 439.128 miles on the first day, in contrast Fernando Alonso completed the least running for McLaren Honda completing just 83.781 miles.

‘Pretty happy with the work everyone’s done with the car – it looks fantastic, It feels great and there’s lot of things we need to improve on, which we will, but a great first day to get that many laps in and our car looks the best, so I’m happy.’ Hamilton told Sky Sports.

‘Firstly, people always want to big you up at the beginning of the season, two, we are world champions, and three, our car looks a thousand times better than anyone else’s so that [favourites tag] is to be expected,’

So after one day of testing what does Lewis Hamilton think the new cars will bring to Formula One in 2017?

‘I was behind a couple of cars out there and it was harder to follow, Right now the tyres are so hard, they don’t drop off, they just keep going and going.

‘So most likely we’re going to be doing a lot more one-stoppers as there’s less degradation, and there’s going to be less overtaking. That’s my estimation but I might be wrong. We’ll find out.’

Let’s hope he’s wrong.