Verstappen Paces Opening Practice in Canada


Max Verstappen went quickest in the first practice session for the Canadian Grand Prix, with Lewis Hamilton finishing just over a tenth of a second ahead of Daniel Ricciardo to split the Red Bull drivers.

Verstappen moved to the top of the order in the final half hour of the 90-minute session, using Pirelli’s hypersoft tyre to post a lap of 1:13.302s to eclipse Hamilton by almost half a second. The Briton, using the ultrasoft compound closed the gap shortly afterwards, however, getting to with a tenth of a second of the Red Bull on the harder compound tyre.

Ricciardo also used the hypersofts to climb to third spot on the timesheet in the final part of the session. His best lap, a 1:13.518 was two tenths adrift of his team-mate but was good enough to edge Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas to fourth place before the Finn was then pushed to fifth as Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel put in a late flyer to beat Bottas by six hundredths of a second.

Vettel’s team-mate, Kimi Raikkonen, completed the top six, while McLaren’s Fernando Alonso was best of the rest, in seventh place.

Renault’s Carlos Sainz was eighth for Renault, on the weekend that the manufacturer introduces a power unit upgrade for the works team and it’s customers. There was trouble, however, for the Spaniard’s team-mate, Nico Hulkenberg.

The German was forced to stop his car after the hairpin midway through the session. The red flags were shown while the Renault driver tried a number of measures to reset the car but Hulkenberg was eventually forced to give up and his session ended there.

Ninth place in the session went to Stoffel Vandoorne, with the McLaren drive finishing a second off Verstappen’s pace but seven tenths of a second cleafr of 10th-placed Pierre Gasly of Toro Rosso.

Elsewhere, there was a trick moment for local hero Lance Stroll. The Williams driver clipped the notorious ‘Wall of Champions’ and sustained a right-rear puncture. However, he managed to limp his car though almost a full lap to make it back to the pits for repairs.

2018 Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix – Free Practice 1 
1 Max Verstappen Red Bull TAG 26 1:13.302
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes Mercedes 29 1:13.390 0.088
3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull TAG 24 1:13.518 0.216
4 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari Ferrari 19 1:13.574 0.272
5 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes Mercedes 31 1:13.617 0.315
6 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari Ferrari 28 1:13.727 0.425
7 Fernando Alonso McLaren Renault 27 1:13.900 0.598
8 Carlos Sainz Renault Renault 24 1:14.116 0.814
9 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Renault 19 1:14.311 1.009
10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso Honda 31 1:15.004 1.702
11 Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 29 1:15.071 1.769
12 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 21 1:15.119 1.817
13 Marcus Ericsson Sauber Ferrari 30 1:15.386 2.084
14 Charles Leclerc Sauber Ferrari 30 1:15.439 2.137
15 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 21 1:15.579 2.277
16 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso Honda 38 1:15.756 2.454
17 Sergey Sirotkin Williams Mercedes 30 1:15.768 2.466
18 Lance Stroll Williams Mercedes 16 1:16.259 2.957
19 Nicholas Latifi Force India Mercedes 28 1:17.145 3.843
20 Nico Hulkenberg Renault Renault 3

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