Lewis Hamilton denied Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg the satisfaction of lapping fastest at his home German Grand Prix on Friday.
With track temperatures soaring, Hamilton set a sizzling pace with a quickest lap of one minute 18.341 seconds in the afternoon session. Formula One world championship leader Rosberg, who had been fastest before lunch with a best of 1:19.131, was second on the timesheets a mere 0.024 off Hamilton's pace.
Dominant Mercedes, seeking their first German Grand Prix victory as a works team since Argentine Juan Manuel Fangio triumphed 60 years ago at the Nuerburgring, finished one-two in both sessions.
Friday was the first chance to assess the performance of cars since the governing body ruled against a front and rear interconnected suspension (FRIC) system. All teams had presented their cars for scrutineering without the systems on Thursday but the times showed no seismic change in the pecking order even if champions Red Bull appeared to have edged slightly closer.
Mercedes also made a rare pitlane bungle when they had the wrong tyres ready for Hamilton during a race simulation and Rosberg had to wait behind him with overheating brakes.
Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, who has won the last two races at the southern circuit which alternates with the Nuerburgring, was third fastest in the morning — and 0.292 off the pace — and then ninth in the afternoon.
Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo, the only driver other than the Mercedes pair to win a race this season, was fourth and third fastest respectively. The Australian's quadruple champion team mate and last year's German GP winner Sebastian Vettel was sixth and eighth.