Formula 1

FP1: Mercedes take 1-2 ahead of Racing Points in Hungarian GP first practice

Spots of rain briefly emerged from steely skies over the Hungaroring for Free Practice 1 – perhaps a sign of things to come – and Lewis Hamilton’s table-topping time of 1m16.003s was just as ominous as he led a Mercedes 1-2 over Valtteri Bottas by 0.086s, with Racing Point’s Sergio Perez in third place.

Even more ominously, Hamilton’s fastest time was set on the hard compound tyres – Bottas’s earlier on in the session with medium tyres – while Perez used softs to end up 0.527s behind the session leader. His team mate Lance Stroll was another four tenths off in P4 as Racing Point enjoyed another impressive practice showing.

Daniel Ricciardo rounded out the top five and was the last of the drivers to beat last year’s FP1 time of 1m17.233s, having done so by 0.033s on medium tyres.

Sixth in the session was Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, in front of his team mate Charles Leclerc by under two tenths – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen having settled for P8, after he was angered by Williams’ Nicholas Latifi apparently holding him up.

FORMULA 1 ARAMCO MAGYAR NAGYDÍJ 2020

Practice 1 results

POSITION TIME
1  Lewis HAMILTON Mercedes 1:16.003
2  Valtteri BOTTAS Mercedes +0.086s
3  Sergio PEREZ Racing Point +0.527s
4  Lance STROLL Racing Point +0.964s
5  Daniel RICCIARDO Renault +1.197s

The final two in the top 10 were McLaren’s Lando Norris and Renault’s Esteban Ocon, with 1.612s splitting Ocon and the top of the charts.

Some spots of rain did hit just before half time in the session, just as the drivers finished their runs on their first sets of tyres and came back into the pits to fit new rubber. Romain Grosjean was the first to come back out in the Haas, and he eventually set the 14th quickest time before there was a flurry of flying laps causing times to tumble, culminating in Hamilton’s fastest time of the session.

McLaren’s Carlos Sainz finished 0.060s off the top 10, and ahead of Haas’s Kevin Magnussen. While Red Bull driver Alex Albon struggled to 13th-fastest in the session, testing new rear-wing endplates on his RB16.

Williams, who yesterday confirmed their current drivers are to stay at the team for 2021, were briefly in the top 10 having begun the session of softs, but eventually finished with Nicholas Latifi 15th and George Russell 18th.

Reserve driver Robert Kubica returned to the track for Alfa Romeo – in place of Kimi Raikkonen – to finish the session 3.147s off the pace after an early spin, while Antonio Giovinazzi was 17th.

AlphaTauri’s Daniil Kvyat finished 16th while Pierre Gasly had a Honda power unit issue and did not complete a lap in this session, which could set him back as rain is forecast to hit the circuit for FP2 this afternoon.

Remembered to change your Fantasy F1 team ahead of qualifying on Saturday? It’s not too late – click here to sign up or tinker with your team.

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