Ferrari's first competitive outing with their revised F2012 got off to a perfect start in Barcelona on Friday as Fernando Alonso set the pace.
It was a slow start to first practice as there was no rush to learn the corners, the undulations or how their cars will perform due to the fact that the drivers are all very familiar with the Circuit de Catalunya given the amount of time spent testing in Spain.
This meant Jean-Eric Vergne had his moment in the limelight, heading the timesheets before losing out to Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi.
Despite big-name rivals venturing out after the first half an hour, the Japanese driver retained the P1 slot as the likes of Michael Schumacher, Kimi Raikkonen, Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber all fell short of the mark.
In fact, the biggest threat to Kobayashi's P1 time came from Williams test driver Valtteri Bottas, who replaced Bruno Senna for FP1, and put in some impressive lap times.
Leaving it until just over 30 minutes remained in the session, the big boys finally headed out for some serious running.
Vettel went quickest with a 1:24.808, Lewis Hamilton took sixth place and Fernando Alonso, in his updated F2012, teased the Spanish crowd as he headed out only to do his seventh installation-style lap without setting a time.
His ninth, though, saw the Spaniard set a lap time which was six-tenths down and only good enough for 11th place. However, the Ferrari driver's 11th lap put him P1 with a 1:24.754.
Alonso went quicker still two laps later, putting some distance between himself and Vettel while Kobayashi was still holding onto third place ahead of Button and Bottas.
The Spaniard held onto the P1 slot with his 1:24.430, taking the P1 slot on his B-spec car's debut, 0.378s up on Vettel.
1 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:24.430 20 laps
2 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1:24.808 0.378 18 laps
3 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 1:24.912 0.482 28 laps
4 Jenson Button McLaren 1:24.996 0.566 24 laps
5 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1:25.120 0.690 24 laps
6 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:25.187 0.757 15 laps
7 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:25.217 0.787 16 laps
8 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 1:25.252 0.822 20 laps
9 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus 1:25.285 0.855 29 laps
10 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:25.339 0.909 24 laps
11 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1:25.367 0.937 22 laps
12 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:25.433 1.003 21 laps
13 Mark Webber Red Bull 1:25.539 1.109 23 laps
14 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:25.607 1.177 20 laps
15 Sergio Perez Sauber 1:25.918 1.488 19 laps
16 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1:26.226 1.796 24 laps
17 Pastor Maldonado Williams 1:26.297 1.867 18 laps
18 Jules Bianchi Force India 1:26.630 2.200 21 laps
19 Vitaly Petrov Caterham 1:27.475 3.045 20 laps
20 Timo Glock Marussia 1:28.267 3.837 21 laps
21 Alexander Rossi Caterham 1:28.448 4.018 25 laps
22 Charles Pic Marussia 1:28.633 4.203 22 laps
23 Pedro de la Rosa HRT 1:29.107 4.677 19 laps
24 Dani Clos HRT 1:31.618 7.188 19 laps