F1 Testing: Hamilton puts Mercedes on top of the pile

Lewis Hamilton ended the opening day of testing fastest - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Lewis Hamilton ensured the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team ended the first day of testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya at the top of the time sheets.

After taking over from team-mate Valtteri Bottas for the afternoon session, Hamilton set a best time of 1:21.765 in his new W08 EQ Power+ to overhaul morning pacesetter Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel improved on his morning time to be only 0.113 seconds adrift of the Mercedes driver in his Scuderia Ferrari SF70H, while Felipe Massa completed the top three for the Williams Martini Racing team, 0.311 seconds down.

The top three teams on the day all completed over one hundred laps, with Hamilton and Bottas combining to complete a day high 152 laps for Mercedes, while Vettel completed 128 laps and Massa 103.

Kevin Magnussen ended up fourth fastest on his first day with the Haas F1 Team, with a late soft tyre run of 1:22.894 propelling him up the order, finishing 0.032 seconds ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, who suffered two mechanical issues on his Red Bull Racing RB13.

Bottas’ morning time was enough to see him end the day in sixth ahead of Sergio Perez, who lost the majority of the afternoon due to a broken exhaust on his Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM10. His time of 1:23.709 from the morning session saw him finish ahead of Carlos Sainz Jr in the all-new Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 and Renault Sport Formula 1 Team’s Nico Hülkenberg.

Fernando Alonso’s struggles continued into the afternoon, completing only twenty-nine laps of the Spanish circuit after the McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team driver lost the whole morning due to an oil leak, while Marcus Ericsson brought up the rear for the Sauber F1 Team, who are running with a 2016 Ferrari power unit in 2017.

Lewis HamiltonGBRMercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:21.76573S
Sebastian VettelGERScuderia Ferrari1:21.878128M
Felipe MassaBRAWilliams Martini Racing1:22.076103S
Kevin MagnussenDENHaas F1 Team1:22.89451S
Daniel RicciardoAUSRed Bull Racing1:22.92650S
Valtteri BottasFINMercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:23.16979S
Sergio PerezMEXSahara Force India F1 Team1:23.70939S
Carlos Sainz JrESPScuderia Toro Rosso1:24.49451M
Nico HulknebergGERRenault Sport Formula 1 Team1:24.78457M
Fernando AlonsoESPMcLaren Honda Formula 1 Team1:24.85229S
Marcus EricssonSWESauber F1 Team1:26.84172M