Lewis Hamilton: Mercedes driver makes prediction for Brazilian Grand Prix

Red Bull and Ferrari aim for a sting in the tail

Hamilton fastest in first practice for Brazil Grand Prix

"It's been a good day", said Hamilton, who arrived at Interlagos on Thursday nursing a cold and will be chasing his 10th win of the season on Sunday.

Hamilton and team-mate Valtteri Bottas were first and second in both sessions, the new champion just 0.048 seconds ahead of the Finn in the afternoon. "As a team we really want to finish one and two".

The Dutch 20-year-old has now won two of the last four races, after a run of poor reliability, while Red Bull have scored more points than second-placed Ferrari since the end of the August break. Overall, we got through what we needed to do.

"We'll see what we get tomorrow but I think we can fine-tune the balance which will help us".

Hamilton, who accused Renault's Nico Hulkenberg over the radio of risky driving in forcing him wide onto the runoff in the morning, was half a second faster than Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen before lunch.

Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull is too far behind in fourth place to catch either.

His 20-year-old Dutch team mate Max Verstappen, victor of two of the last four races, was fourth and fifth on the respective timesheets.

Hamilton became the most successful British driver of all-time and levelled up with Sebastian Vettel by clinching a fourth trophy with two races to spare. Will team orders come into effect at Mercedes?

Hamilton has won nine times this year, including five of the last seven, and can still equal the career best of 11 in a season he achieved in 2014.

Raikkonen got nearest to the silver cars, for Ferrari, with 1m 09.744s, but Verstappen was right with him on 1m 09.750s and Ricciardo and Vettel were close with 1m 09.828s and 1m 09.984s respectively.

Sergio Perez was 12th for Force India ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne, while Williams rookie Lance Stroll finished in 14th, though he will hope to cut the 0.7s deficit to teammate Massa in qualifying.

Renault and Toro Rosso, meanwhile had tougher days, including the latter barely posting a lap in the morning after Brendon Hartley suffered another STR-Renault engine failure and the team deciding to sit team-mate Pierre Gasly while it investigated.

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