Bottas heads Hamilton in Mexico

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Mexico, Autódromo Hermanos Rodriguezmx

Valtteri Bottas topped Mercedes team mate Lewis Hamilton as running commenced in Mexico, ahead of Sunday's Mexican Grand Prix. The 90 minutes practice session unusually saw Mercedes use the softest compound tyre, contrary to rivals Ferrari and Red Bull Racing.

The deficit of both Red Bulls was small enough to realistically expect another closely fought weekend. In fact, their deficit to Bottas is about the same, or less than the prediced delta between Pirelli's ultrasoft and supersoft tyres.

Ferrari was slightly further behind, but even then, still fairly comfortably 5th and 6th fastest. Home racer Sergio Perez ended up 7th fastest, 3 tenths behind the slowest Ferrari, and a tenth faster than McLaren's Fernando Alonso. Felipe Massa was 9th, followed by Nico Hulkenberg.

Meanwhile, there were troubles for Alfonso Celis. The Force India driver made it an early end to his session as he crashed his car at Turn 16, breaking off the rear wing of his car as he slid backwards into the barriers.

McLaren's Stoffel Vandoorne didn't even get that far, as he failed to record a laptime. Fitted with a new Honda engine, the Belgian soon encountered more trouble and was forced back to the pits, where the team eventually decided to revert him back to Honda spec 3.7


177Valtteri BottasMercedes AMG1:17.824-42
244Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG1:18.290+0.466s35
333Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing TAG Heuer1:18.395+0.571s16
43Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing TAG Heuer1:18.421+0.597s28
55Sebastian VettelFerrari1:18.586+0.762s28
67Kimi RäikkönenFerrari1:19.008+1.184s27
711Sergio PerezForce India Mercedes1:19.240+1.416s21
814Fernando AlonsoMcLaren Honda1:19.346+1.522s20
919Felipe MassaWilliams Mercedes1:19.443+1.619s32
1027Nico HulkenbergRenault1:19.552+1.728s19
1155Carlos SainzRenault1:19.554+1.730s24
1218Lance StrollWilliams Mercedes1:19.772+1.948s34
1320Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari1:20.644+2.820s16
1494Pascal WehrleinSauber Ferrari1:20.971+3.147s30
1550Antonio GiovinazziHaas Ferrari1:21.269+3.445s26
1637Charles LeclercSauber Ferrari1:21.446+3.622s28
1738Sean GelaelToro Rosso1:21.639+3.815s29
1828Brendon HartleyToro Rosso1:21.747+3.923s10
1934Alfonso CelisForce India Mercedes1:22.342+4.518s17
202Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren Honda--3