Spain, FP1: Bottas quickest in first practice for Spanish GP
Ahead of Verstappen and Hamilton
Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas set the fastest lap of the first practice session for this weekend’s FIA Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix, beating Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen by 0.033s, with Lewis Hamilton third in the other Mercedes.
In the first part of the session, Lewis Hamilton initially led the way on hard tyres with a lap of 1:21.014s before Verstappen eclipsed that with a lap of 1:20.405s set on the same compound. The Dutchman was then edged out of P1 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso who became the first man to dip below the 1m20s mark with a lap of 1:19.950.
The local hero set the lap required soft tyres to reach the time, however, and he was then bumped out of P1 by Hamilton who had continued his hard tyre run and set a time of 1:19.675s.
Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel had a turn at the top midway through the session with a lap of 1:19.234 as the majority of the pack made the switch to soft tyres.
Hamilton’s first lap on the red-banded rubber took him back to the top of the timesheet with a lap of 1m18.808s, while team-mate Bottas slotted into P2. The Finn’s time was set at the second attempt after he backed out of his first run after going wide in Turn 3. Hamilton soon went quicker again though with a lap of 1:18.627s.
Bottas found more time on his next run, though and he set the session’s best time at 1:18.504.
The session was red flagged with 15-minutes left on the clock when Alfa Romeo reserve Robert Kubica lost the rear of his car going through the re-profiled Turn 10 and ended up beached in the gravel.
The action resumed with just under 10 minutes to go and it was then that Red Bull’s drivers made their first appearance on softs tyres.
Sergio Pérez failed to match the pace at the head of the order and eventually finished ninth in the session but Verstappen was instantly on the pace and finished just 0.033s behind Bottas after two small errors in the final sector.
Lando Norris ended the session in fourth place and the McLaren driver was followed by the Ferrari cars of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz. Pierre Gasly was seventh for AlphaTauri ahead of Vettel and Pérez and Lance Stroll rounded out the top 10.
|01||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes W12||1:18.504||25|
|02||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Honda RB16B||1:18.537||19|
|03||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes W12||1:18.627||22|
|04||Lando Norris||McLaren Mercedes MCL35M||1:18.944||24|
|05||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari SF21||1:18.996||25|
|06||Carlos Sainz||Ferrari SF21||1:19.020||22|
|07||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri Honda AT02||1:19.062||26|
|08||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21||1:19.234||24|
|09||Sergio Pérez||Red Bull Honda RB16B||1:19.349||17|
|10||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21||1:19.429||25|
|11||Yuki Tsunoda||AlphaTauri Honda AT02||1:19.669||22|
|12||Esteban Ocon||Alpine Renault A521||1:19.681||28|
|13||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41||1:19.694||23|
|14||Daniel Ricciardo||McLaren Mercedes MCL35M||1:19.732||24|
|15||Fernando Alonso||Alpine Renault A521||1:19.950||25|
|16||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Mercedes FW43B||1:20.270||25|
|17||Roy Nissany||Williams Mercedes FW43B||1:20.700||23|
|18||Mick Schumacher||Haas Ferrari VF-21||1:20.766||23|
|19||Robert Kubica||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41||1:21.887||13|
|20||Nikita Mazepin||Haas Ferrari VF-21||1:21.976||22|