Hungaroring, FP: Gasly sets the pace in Budapest
Frenchman scorches in hot Free Practice
Pierre Gasly has set a target for his rivals to match by taking the top spot in this morning’s Free Practice session in Budapest, setting the pace for almost the entire session to come home almost half a second ahead of Alex Lynn and Sergey Sirotkin.
The Red Bull tester stopped the clocks at 1:27.138 a third of the way through the session, beating his own top time to extend the gap back to his rivals in scorching conditions at the Hungaroring: with track temperatures increasing throughout there was little chance for the rest of the field to improve their laptimes, and attention was turned to fine tuning the cars for tomorrow’s race.
The entire grid were straight out on track as the session commenced under blue skies: an overnight shower made little impact as the circuit was completely dry, and earlier clouds were burnt away as temperatures soared. Gasly set the first competitive lap 7 minutes in before improving on it two laps later: Sirotkin briefly claimed the top spot but was knocked back off the perch by Gasly when he completed his lap right behind the Russian, and the fight for first was over, with Lynn the only man to improve substantially in the second half of the session by claiming P2 with 2 minutes remaining.
A number of drivers went wide at Turns 1 and 11 as they looked for the limits, but the only incident of note was when Sergio Canamasas spun at Turn 12 before getting back underway once again: the Spaniard finished the session in the Top ten behind Raffaele Marciello, Nobuharu Matsushita, Norman Nato, Oliver Rowland, Antonio Giovinazzi and Luca Ghiotto, all of whom will be looking to close the gap to Gasly in this afternoon’s Qualifying session.
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