F1 Britain: Bottas Finishes Fastest at Silverstone Free Practice 1


Valtteri Bottas finishes the first practice session fastest - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team driver Valtteri Bottas finished the first Practice Session fastest of the British Grand Prix fastest ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton on Friday morning.

Both Mercedes drivers traded places for the top spot with both drivers eventually breaking into the 1:29’s and beating last year’s pole position time set by Hamilton. Bottas was the quickest of the two setting a 1:29.106s ahead of Hamilton’s 1:29.184. Both drivers set their fastest times on the Soft Pirelli compound.

Both Red Bull Racing drivers followed with Max Verstappen ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, making good use of their latest fuel upgrade. Verstappen set the fastest time on the Supersoft tyres with a 1:29.604s, around five-tenths slower than Bottas. Ricciardo started the session with aero racks on the front of his RB13 before returning to the pits and later resume his practice program.

Scuderia Ferrari‘s Kimi Raikkonen finished fifth in the session with a 1:30.137s, three tenths ahead of Sebastian Vettel. The German became the first driver to run the new “Shield” cockpit protection at the start of the session for one lap before returning to the pits. Vettel returned to the track to continued his session, before occurring a brief spin at Becketts but escaped with no damage. Ferrari are running their new internal combustion engine upgrade for this weekend on both drivers.

Scuderia Toro Rosso‘s Daniil Kvyat was the best of the rest in seventh with a 1:30.895s on the Supersoft tyres, despite an issue raising its head just as the chequered flag fell, with the Russian finishing ahead of Fernando Alonso of the McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team in eighth.

The Spaniard is running the latest Spec-3 Honda engine upgrade, last used in Austria before switching back in Spec-2 that weekend. Williams Martini Racing‘s Felipe Massa ended the session in ninth and suffered some damage after running wide at Copse, hitting the kerb with the floor and spreading debris over the exit of the fast corner.

Stoffel Vandoorne rounded up the top ten in the second McLaren with a 1:31.041s, a forty-two thousandth of a tenth slower than Massa, with Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr eleventh ahead of both Sahara Force India F1 Team driver’s, Esteban Ocon ahead of Sergio Perez.

Haas F1 Team‘s Romain Grosjean had a brief off-track moment when he ran wide at Copse corner in the last ten minutes of the session remaining. Haas was running Carbon Industies brakes during the session, and so far have suffered no issues so far from both cars, although Silverstone is not a track renowned for heavy braking.

The Frenchman ended the session in fourteenth with a 1:31.610s, a few thousandth tenths faster than Lance Stroll, who lost some track time himself after Williams changed the floor of his car mid-session after he damaged it over the same kerbs Massa had the issues with.

Ferrari reserve driver Antonio Giovinazzi took over Kevin Magnussen‘s seat in the Haas team for the session and ended the session with a 1:32.031s in sixteenth place. Giovinazzi makes his return behind a wheel of an F1 car for the first time since his replacing Pascal Wehrlein in the Sauber F1 Team for the opening two races of the season. Magnussen will return for free practice two.

The two Renault Sport Formula 1 Team‘s followed and struggled for pace with Nico Hulkenberg down the order in seventh place with a 1:32.171s on the Supersoft tyres with team-mate Jolyon Palmer in eighteenth. Palmer failed to complete a lap until midway through the session after repairs were needed to be made to his RS.17.

Sauber completed the time sheets with Wehrlein in nineteenth place with a 1:33.029s on the Soft tyres, three-tenths faster than Marcus Ericsson. Wehrlein was force to come in after the team radioed in about high temperatures in the gearbox, but he was soon sent back on his way without losing any significant track time.

PosNo.DriverTeamTimeGapLaps
177Valtteri BottasMercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:29.10629
244Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:29.1840.07829
333Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing1:29.6040.49826
43Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing1:29.9420.83619
57Kimi RaikkonnenScuderia Ferrari1:30.1371.03119
65Sebastian VettelScuderia Ferrari1:30.5171.41119
726Daniil KvyatScuderia Toro Rosso1:30.8951.78921
814Fernando AlonsoMcLaren Honda Formula 1 Team1:30.9931.88720
919Felipe MassaWilliams Martini Racing1:30.9991.89326
102Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren Honda Formula 1 Team1:31.0411.93527
1155Carlos Sainz JrScuderia Toro Rosso1:31.2002.09424
1231Esteban OconSahara Force India F1 Team1:31.2102.10432
1311Sergio PerezSahara Force India F1 Team1:31.2972.19134
148Romain GrosjeanHaas-F1 Team1:31.6102.50424
1518Lance StrollWilliams Martini Racing1:31.6842.57824
1650Antonio GiovinazziHaas-F1 Team1:32.0312.92524
1727Nico HulkenbergRenault Sport Formula One Team1:32.1713.06519
1830Jolyon PalmerRenault Sport Formula One Team1:32.4503.34416
1994Pascal WehrleinSauber F1 Team1:33.0293.92323
209Marcus EricssonSauber F1 Team1:33.3994.29326