FP1: Verstappen sets early pace at Austin

By on
F1 Grand Prix, GP United States, Circuit of The Americasus

Max Verstappen led the first practice session at the Circuit of The Americas (COTA), topping Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull teammate Alex Albon.

With just 10°C, the weather was unusually cool, despite clear and sunny skies. As temperatures are expected to remain cool throughout the weekend, running in FP1 proved useful nonetheless.

Both Red Bulls seemed to be perfectly suited for the conditions, with only Vettel managing to keep up with them. Behind them, Pierre Gasly turned up 4th, albeit nearly a full second down on the early pace setter.

Daniel Ricciardo ended the session 5th fastest for Renault, followed by Haas's Romain Grosjean, and the second Ferrari of Charles Leclerc as the latter was hampered by an issue with his throttle pedal.

The Mercedes seemed to like the conditions a lot less, with just one of them in the top 10. Lewis Hamilton as 8th fastest, but he was very busy out on track with 32 laps completed. His team mate at Mercedes, Valtteri Bottas, ended up just 17th, but with 40 timed laps, the only driver to do more mileage than Lewis Hamilton.

Lance Stroll from Racing Point and Haas's Kevin Magnussen completed the top 10.

While Haas were firmly in the top 10, McLaren had a difficult session. Balance issues for both cars saw Carlos Sainz spinning at high speed through Turn 5 before ended up 12th while Lando Norris only finished 18th fastest.

With that time, he was better only than both Williams, where Kubica beat Nicholas Latifi. The Canadian F2 driver, and Williams's test driver, managed only half an hour of running before a gearbox issue finished his running after only 7 timed laps.

Results

Pos.No.DriverCarTimeGapLaps
133Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing Honda1:34.057-26
25Sebastian VettelFerrari1:34.226+0.169s30
323Alexander AlbonRed Bull Racing Honda1:34.316+0.259s28
410Pierre GaslyScuderia Toro Rosso Honda1:35.008+0.951s32
53Daniel RicciardoRenault1:35.263+1.206s29
68Romain GrosjeanHaas Ferrari1:35.356+1.299s24
716Charles LeclercFerrari1:35.380+1.323s23
844Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG1:35.439+1.382s32
918Lance StrollRacing Point BWT Mercedes1:35.586+1.529s31
1020Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari1:35.659+1.602s23
1126Daniil KvyatScuderia Toro Rosso Honda1:35.661+1.604s31
1255Carlos SainzMcLaren Renault1:35.723+1.666s26
137Kimi RäikkönenAlfa Romeo Racing Ferrari1:35.854+1.797s22
1411Sergio PerezRacing Point BWT Mercedes1:35.971+1.914s29
1599Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo Racing Ferrari1:36.037+1.980s26
1627Nico HulkenbergRenault1:36.124+2.067s24
1777Valtteri BottasMercedes AMG1:36.159+2.102s40
184Lando NorrisMcLaren Renault1:36.263+2.206s23
1988Robert KubicaWilliams Mercedes1:37.948+3.891s28
2040Nicholas LatifiWilliams Mercedes1:41.112+7.055s7