Max quickest in Austrian GP opening practice
Published on 02 July 2021 by Stefan Meens
Max Verstappen clocked the fastest lap during the first Friday practice session of the Austrian Grand Prix. The Dutchman was quickest lapping the Red Bull Ring ahead of the Ferraris of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz.
During this weekend’s FP1 and 2, the teams are obliged to run a set of Pirelli prototype tyres over twelve laps, following a construction change Pirelli has made to their rear tyres, following the issues in Baku.
When the pitlane opens, it is overcast with a 40% chance of rain, resulting in a relative mild 17 degrees Celsius air temperature and a 31-degree temp for the track.
The Red Bull Racing and Alpha Tauri drivers set the pace in the opening ten minutes with the first four spots on the leader boards occupied by Honda powered teams.
After his first bunch of flying laps, Max heads back to the pits to bolt on the Pirelli prototype tyres. He seems pleased with the grip they offer; he betters his lap time and remains in P1.
At the halfway mark, the circuit becomes relatively quiet, before a flurry of activity ensues in the last twenty minutes. In this final third, most teams opt for a run on the soft compound and as a result, the lap times drop.
With fifteen minutes to go, Max remains in first, but he is joined in the top three by the two Ferraris. Leclerc is the fastest of the two, narrowly outpacing Carlos Sainz.
Whilst Max is on a long run, the two Mercedes take to the track on brand new softs. Despite the fresh rubber, Lewis Hamilton only manages the seventh quickest time, with Valtteri Bottas claiming fourth. At the front there are no changes, meaning Max finishes FP1 at top of the timing sheets.
|1||Max Verstappen||VER||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:05.143||37|
|5||Yuki Tsunoda||TSU||AlphaTauri Honda||1:05.474||+0.331s||35|
|6||Kimi Räikkönen||RAI||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:05.586||+0.443s||28|
|8||Sergio Perez||PER||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:05.726||+0.583s||31|
|9||Pierre Gasly||GAS||AlphaTauri Honda||1:05.726||+0.583s||36|
|10||Lando Norris||NOR||McLaren Mercedes||1:05.880||+0.737s||28|
|11||Esteban Ocon||OCO||Alpine Renault||1:05.980||+0.837s||30|
|12||Daniel Ricciardo||RIC||McLaren Mercedes||1:06.181||+1.038s||31|
|13||Lance Stroll||STR||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:06.203||+1.060s||30|
|14||Guanyu Zhou||ZHO||Alpine Renault||1:06.414||+1.271s||29|
|15||Sebastian Vettel||VET||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:06.444||+1.301s||28|
|16||Callum Ilott||ILO||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:06.564||+1.421s||23|
|17||Mick Schumacher||MSC||Haas Ferrari||1:06.583||+1.440s||29|
|18||Roy Nissany||NIS||Williams Mercedes||1:06.683||+1.540s||34|
|19||Nicholas Latifi||LAT||Williams Mercedes||1:06.978||+1.835s||36|
|20||Nikita Mazepin||MAZ||Haas Ferrari||1:07.316||+2.173s||30|