Valtteri Bottas topped the first practice session as Formula 1 returned to Mugello, while Red Bull and Ferrari also put cars in the top three with Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc.
Bottas Leads Tuscan GP FP1 ..As many of the teams returned to Mugello for the first time since a test in 2012, the first 40 minutes was mostly done on medium and hard tyres while teams trialled upgrades and re-acclimatised to the venue, while the last 40 minutes was largely dedicated to soft-tyre running.
FIRST FP1 – TUSCANY
|1||Valtteri BOTTAS||Mercedes||1: 17,879|
|2||Max VERSTAPPEN||Red Bull||1: 17,927|
|3||Charles LECLERC||Ferrari||1: 18.186|
|4||Lewis HAMILTON||Mercedes||1: 18.409|
|5||Pierre GASLY||Alpha Tauri||1: 18,676|
|6||Esteban OCON||Renault||1: 18,805|
|7||Daniil KVYAT||Alpha Tauri||1: 18,839|
|8||Lando NORRIS||McLaren||1: 18,981|
|9||Alexander ALBON||Red Bull||1: 19,068|
|10||Daniel RICCIARDO||Renault||1: 19.140|
|11||Kimi RÄIKKÖNEN||Alfa Romeo||1: 19.219|
|12||Romain GROSJEAN||Hare||1: 19.224|
|13||Sebastian VETTEL||Ferrari||1: 19.267|
|14||Antonio GIOVINAZZI||Alfa Romeo||1: 19,322|
|15||Carlos SAINZ||McLaren||1: 19.457|
|16||George RUSSELL||Williams||1: 19.478|
|17||Kevin MAGNUSSEN||Hare||1: 19.551|
|18||Lance STROLL||Racing Point||1: 19.836|
|19||Sergio PÉREZ||Racing Point||1: 19,840|
|20||Nicholas LATIFI||Williams||1: 20.034|
BOTTAS LEADS TUSCAN GP FP1
Verstappen, who tested here recently in a GT car to learn the track, topped the early runners on the hard compound tyre. Most of the rest of the top 10 used the medium during that early part of the session, making the Red Bull driver’s benchmark even more impressive ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix.
It was the busiest first 40 minutes of an FP1 so far this season in terms of mileage, with teams taking advantage of a ‘free’ set of tyres they had to return after that duration of running.
After the mid-session lull with 40 minutes to go when the whole field pitted to remove those tyres, the frontrunners took on the softs and a flurry of improvements followed, with the whole top 10 setting its best laps on the soft in the last 40 minutes.
Bottas jumped from fourth on the hard tyre to the top of the time sheets, with a 1m17.879s for Mercedes.
Verstappen was the only other driver into the 1m17s, 0.048s slower than Bottas. He did complain late in the session of traffic, specifically from Lance Stroll.
Charles Leclerc kicked off Ferrari’s 1000 grand prix celebration with the third-fastest time, on the softs, reportedly running a new chassis after his Parabolica crash in last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix at Monza.
Verstappen and Leclerc’s form kicked the second Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton out of the top three, as he was 0.530s slower than his session-topping team-mate Bottas.
To add insult to injury, Hamilton may have suffered power unit damage in the last few minutes of the session.
Shock Monza race winner Pierre Gasly began his AlphaTauri team’s second event in its home country in consecutive weeks by topping the midfield, taking the fifth fastest time ahead of the best Renault of Esteban Ocon.
Daniil Kvyat was seventh for AlphaTauri, while McLaren’s Lando Norris – who had topped the timesheets as one of the first to set a blistering lap on the soft tyres with just over 30 minutes remaining – was ultimately the last driver into the 1m18s in eighth.
Alex Albon was ninth on his soft tyre run, but his lap was only as quick as his Red Bull team-mate Verstappen’s hard-tyre benchmark earlier in the session, with work to do for the Albon side of the garage.
He did at least complete the highest number of laps in the session with 34.
Daniel Ricciardo rounded out the the top 10 for Renault, over three tenths shy of his team-mate Ocon.
Kimi Raikkonen headed Romain Grosjean in the battle of the Ferrari customer-powered cars, beating the works car of Sebastian Vettel in the process.
Despite the weight of his future direction being lifted after his Aston Martin move was confirmed on Thursday, Vettel’s on-track struggles continued as he battled to string together a lap and complained of high tyre-temperatures on the soft tyre to lie 13th behind Raikkonen and Grosjean respectively.
HAMILTON, CALL FOR PROTECTION OF THE RAINFOREST “DEFORESTATION OF THE AMAZON MUST STOP”
DANIEL RICCIARDO : THE CAR WAS WORKING VERY, VERY WELL
JEAN TODT : VOLKSWAGEN IS WELCOME IN FORMULA 1 2023
RENAULT CONFIRMS : ABITEBOUL TO HEAD UP ALPINE
WOLFF ABOUT EUROPEAN GP : THIS IS AN INTERESTING NEW CONCEPT
ALBON STILL GOT WORK TO DO AND THE GAP TO VERSTAPPEN MUST BE NARROWED
F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|Russia ||27 Sep|
|10h00 - 11h30||Free practice 1|
|14h00 - 15h30||Free practice 2|
|11h00 - 12h00||Free practice 3|
|14h00 - 15h00||Qualification|
|14h10 - 16h10||Race|