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Silverstone, FP1: Verstappen quickest in opening practice for British GP

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By Olivier Ferret

16 July 2021 - 16:41
Silverstone, FP1: Verstappen quickest

Max Verstappen set the quickest lap of the opening practice session for the British Grand Prix, with the Red Bull driver eclipsing McLaren’s Lando Norris and title rival Lewis Hamilton by almost eight tenths of a second.

With a new format in place for the weekend to accommodate tomorrows first Sprint Qualifying and with just a single one-hour practice session at their disposal ahead of Friday evening’s Qualifying session, teams were forced to hit the ground running at Silverstone in search of a workable set-up.

Hamilton set the early pace with a lap of 1:30.048 set on medium tyres, before Verstappen moved from hard to medium compound Pirellis and posted a time of 1:28.179, over half a second faster than team-mate Sergio Pérez. Verstappen then improved by four tenths of a second as he stretched well away from his rivals.

He maintained a healthy gap when he switched to soft tyres too. The Dutchman recorded a lap of 1:27.035 to initially go over a second clear of Pérez, but McLaren’s Norris impressed with a time of 1:27.814 set on medium tyres.

Hamilton then bolted on a set of softs but the defending champion couldn’t match the pace of Verstappen or Norris and he finished the session in third place, 0779s behind the Red Bull driver but just 0.001s off Norris.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc moved up to fourth place with a late flying lap on softs that shuffled Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas.

Leclerc’s team-mate Carlos Sainz took sixth place, with Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel taking seventh place ahead of the second Red Bull of Pérez. Daniel Ricciardo was ninth for McLaren ahead of Esteban Ocon who was tenth for Alpine.

Pos.DriverCarTimeLaps
01 Max Verstappen Red Bull Honda RB16B 1:27.035 23
02 Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes MCL35M 1:27.814 26
03 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W12 1:27.815 30
04 Charles Leclerc Ferrari SF21 1:27.828 26
05 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes W12 1:27.897 30
06 Carlos Sainz Ferrari SF21 1:27.923 25
07 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21 1:28.062 23
08 Sergio Pérez Red Bull Honda RB16B 1:28.163 25
09 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes MCL35M 1:28.211 28
10 Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault A521 1:28.415 24
11 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri Honda AT02 1:28.449 28
12 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri Honda AT02 1:28.600 29
13 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41 1:28.827 26
14 Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault A521 1:28.873 24
15 Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41 1:29.220 27
16 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW43B 1:29.227 27
17 Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari VF-21 1:29.227 24
18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21 1:29.597 21
19 Nikita Mazepin Haas Ferrari VF-21 1:29.808 23
20 George Russell Williams Mercedes FW43B 1:29.857 28

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