McLaren rushed an interim 'double diffuser' onto Lewis Hamilton's car for the Chinese grand prix weekend.

McLaren rushed an interim 'double diffuser' onto Lewis Hamilton's car for the Chinese grand prix weekend.

The reigning world champion then steered the modified MP4-24 to the top of the morning timesheets in Friday practice, ahead of the two dominant Brawns.

In the other McLaren, Heikki Kovalainen is not using the new aerodynamic package, and was fourth quickest, just over three tenths slower than the tweaked car.

While the Mercedes-powered team's fortunes took a boost in Shanghai, reigning constructors champions Ferrari's seemed to dip even lower: Felipe Massa was just fifteenth quickest in an apparently horrendously-handling F60.

Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali has confirmed that neither Maranello built car is using KERS this weekend, because the team is no longer sure its system can be run "safely and reliably".

It was also an awful session for BMW, whose Nick Heidfeld was the fastest of the two F1.09s, down in sixteenth place.

The 'diffuser' cars driven by Mark Webber, Jarno Trulli, Nico Rosberg and Timo Glock, meanwhile, were all inside the top eight, followed by Fernando Alonso's Renault.

Like Hamilton, the Spaniard is at the wheel of an interim 'double diffuser' here, following the Court of Appeal's clarification earlier this week that the solution is fully legal.

 

Be part of something big