Nico Rosberg ended the opening Free Practice session in Singapore with the quickest time as Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS once again finished first and second.
The German driver was quick throughout the session, ending with a time of 1m47.995s, with Lewis Hamilton 0.319s back in second. The British driver looked to be struggling in comparison to Rosberg, and made a small mistake during the session at the end of the back straight.
Daniel Ricciardo was in close order to Hamilton, ending just 0.017s back in third in the leading Infiniti Red Bull Racing machine, while Scuderia Ferrari duo Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen were fourth and fifth. Vettel had a brief moment at turn four when he locked a wheel and almost hit the barrier, but was able to recover and return to the track without any damage.
Valtteri Bottas was sixth for Williams Martini Racing, albeit 1.385s back from the pace set by Rosberg, while Max Verstappen was seventh on his first visit to the circuit for Scuderia Toro Rosso a further 0.086s back.
Nico Hulkenberg of Sahara Force India, Carlos Sainz in the second Toro Rosso and Pastor Maldonado of the Lotus F1 Team completed the top ten. The Venezuelan surviving a brush with the wall but ended his session early when his engineers called him into the pits to ensure a developing gearbox issue could be solved.
Fernando Alonso was just outside the top ten for the McLaren-Honda team, just ahead of Force India’s Sergio Perez, with Felipe Nasr thirteenth for Sauber, who are running with an updated package for the first time this season in Singapore. Nasr could be in trouble with the stewards for not adhering to the new turn one run-off regulations by cutting back onto the track before the bollard that drivers have been told to rejoin after.
Romain Grosjean was down in fourteenth in the second Lotus ahead of Jenson Button’s McLaren, with Marcus Ericsson sixteenth ahead of Felipe Massa of Williams and Daniil Kvyat of Red Bull, who spent the majority of the session in the pit lane with an assortment of issues.
Will Stevens beat new Manor F1 Team team-mate Alexander Rossi to nineteenth by just 0.015s, but the American debutant blotted his copybook by crashing in the final moments of qualifying at turn eighteen, breaking both the front and rear suspensions and causing a red flag that ended the session prematurely.
Singapore Free Practice 1 Times
POS NO. DRIVER NAT TEAM TIME
1 6 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes 1m47.995s
2 44 Lewis Hamilton GBR Mercedes 1m48.314s
3 3 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Red Bull-Renault 1m48.331s
4 5 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari 1m48.494s
5 7 Kimi Raikkonen FIN Ferrari 1m48.785s
6 77 Valtteri Bottas FIN Williams-Mercedes 1m49.380s
7 33 Max Verstappen NED Toro Rosso-Renault 1m49.466s
8 27 Nico Hulkenberg GER Force India-Mercedes 1m49.854s
9 55 Carlos Sainz Jr ESP Toro Rosso-Renault 1m50.019s
10 13 Pastor Maldonado VEN Lotus-Mercedes 1m50.068s
11 14 Fernando Alonso ESP McLaren-Honda 1m50.123s
12 11 Sergio Perez MEX Force India-Mercedes 1m50.125s
13 12 Felipe Nasr BRZ Sauber-Ferrari 1m50.158s
14 8 Romain Grosjean FRA Lotus-Mercedes 1m50.341s
15 22 Jenson Button GBR McLaren-Honda 1m50.455s
16 9 Marcus Ericsson SWE Sauber-Ferrari 1m50.883s
17 19 Felipe Massa BRZ Williams-Mercedes 1m51.035s
18 26 Daniil Kvyat RUS Red Bull-Renault 1m51.188s
19 28 Will Stevens GBR Manor-Ferrari 1m53.903s
20 53 Alexander Rossi USA Manor-Ferrari 1m53.918s