While the sport has undergone a radical overhaul of its regulations over the winter in a bid to spice up the show, it was a familiar driver and team at the top of the order on Monday night.
Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas, the Finn who has replaced world champion Nico Rosberg following his shock retirement, completed more mileage than any other team.
And Mercedes, winners of the past three driver and constructors’ championships, boasted impressive speed, too, with Hamilton fastest from Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
“I still think we’re the team to beat,” said Hamilton. “We have a lot of work ahead of us to do, the same as every single team on the grid.
“Right now we’re just focusing on our own job to do the very best that we can, but it’s been a good day, a really positive day for the team.
“The car looks fantastic and it feels great. We did…