Red Bull driver Max Verstappen led the opening practice session of Formula 1’s second Red Bull Ring weekend of 2021, the Austrian Grand Prix.
Formula 1 championship leader Max Verstappen maintained his strong form as he topped opening practice for the Austrian Grand Prix.
Formula 1 has stayed on for back-to-back events at the Red Bull Ring, marking the 26th grand prix in the calendar year since the venue kick-started the delayed 2020 season.
2021 F1 AUSTRIAN GRAND PRIX – FREE PRACTICE RESULTS (1)
|1||Max Verstappen||NED||Red Bull Racing||1m05.143s|
|2||Charles Leclerc||MON||Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow||1m05.409s|
|3||Carlos Sainz||ESP||Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow||1m05.431s|
|4||Valtteri Bottas||FIN||Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team||1m05.445s|
|5||Yuki Tsunoda||JPN||Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda||1m05.474s|
|6||Kimi Raikkonen||FIN||Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen||1m05.586s|
|7||Lewis Hamilton||GBR||Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team||1m05.709s|
|8||Sergio Perez||MEX||Red Bull Racing||1m05.726s|
|9||Pierre Gasly||FRA||Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda||1m05.726s|
|10||Lando Norris||GBR||McLaren F1 Team||1m05.880s|
|11||Esteban Ocon||FRA||Alpine F1 Team||1m05.980s|
|12||Daniel Ricciardo||AUS||McLaren F1 Team||1m06.181s|
|13||Lance Stroll||CAN||Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team||1m06.203s|
|14||Guanyu Zhou||CHI||Alpine F1 Team||1m06.414s|
|15||Sebastian Vettel||GER||Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team||1m06.444s|
|16||Callum Ilott||GBR||Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen||1m05.564s|
|17||Mick Schumacher||GER||Uralkali Haas F1 Team||1m06.583s|
|18||Roy Nissany||ISR||Williams Racing||1m06.683s|
|19||Nicholas Latifi||CAN||Williams Racing||1m06.978s|
|20||Nikita Mazepin||RUS||Uralkali Haas F1 Team||1m07.316s|
In a deviation from last weekend’s Styrian Grand Prix Pirelli has gone one step softer with its tyre nominations, with the C3s, C4s and C5s in use.
Verstappen, who heads Lewis Hamilton by 18 points, clocked a time of 1:05.143s to finish 0.266s clear of the field up front, as Red Bull goes in search of a fifth straight win, and Verstappen a clean sweep of the current triple-header.
Ferrari emerged as Verstappen’s nearest rival, with Charles Leclerc second, and Carlos Sainz third.
Hamilton finished the session in seventh spot, half a second behind his title rival, having been one of several drivers to lock up heavily into Turn 1.
Valtteri Bottas was fourth, having also shot wide at the first corner, ahead of AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda and Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen, who classified an impressive sixth.
Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and McLaren’s Lando Norris rounded out the top 10.
Drivers spent part of the session trialling unmarked tyres as part of Pirelli’s efforts to address any issues arising from its Baku failures.
The test sets, effectively a C4 compound, feature a revised rear construction, and they will also be available during Friday’s second session.
It will be determined in the coming days whether the revised constructions will be introduced from the British Grand Prix onwards.
It was a scruffy session for Stroll as the Canadian suffered a second spin exiting the final corner as he prepared for a hot lap.
Stroll nonetheless finished the session in 13th place, two spots ahead of Aston Martin team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
Three test drivers were afforded the opportunity to get behind the wheel of Formula 1 machinery during the session – with a grand prix weekend debut for Alpine’s Guanyu Zhou.
Zhou, the Formula 2 championship leader, finished in 14th position, three spots behind team-mate Esteban Ocon.
Alfa Romeo’s back-up reserve Callum Ilott had his second outing of the campaign, classifying in 16th place, while Williams tester Roy Nissany was 18th.
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THE NEXT RACE 2021
|Bahrain ||26 Mar|
|14:30 - 15:30||Free practice 1|
|18:00 - 19:00||Free practice 2|
|15:00 - 16:00||Free practice 3|
|18:00 - 19:00||Qualifying|
|18:00 - 20:00||Race|
|Bahrain||57 laps||308.238 km|