Formula One begun their 2020 season in style as Mercedes dominated Friday Practice, whilst several teams jostled for positions as teams begun to understand their 2020 cars in earnest.
Lewis Hamilton topped both sessions from teammate – Valtteri Bottas, whilst reliability and mistakes plagued several drivers throughout both sessions, as we bring full details of both Friday practice sessions.
Free Practice OneEmbed from Getty Images
McLaren were straight out on track with Carlos Sainz leading Lando Norris out for their installation laps, with several drivers following in a quiet opening ten minutes as drivers immediately returned to the pits to check their cars over and make tweaks.
Norris eventually emerged back out and soon traded fastest laps with Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas, in which Bottas eventually went fastest with a 1m 07.578.
Haas’ Romain Grosjean shortly afterwards suffered a loss of brake pedal which confined him to the garage with no lap time recorded in this session, although he did managed to get out at the end to check the car over.Embed from Getty Images
Lewis Hamilton meanwhile was constantly improving as he finished his first run with a best time of a 1m 06.994, just as Racing Point’s Sergio Perez experienced power unit issues as smoke billowed out of the rear through various corners.
Hamilton improved once again to a 1m 06.205 whilst Perez quickly resolved his mechanical issue and went top with a 1m 06.052 on medium tyres ten minutes later.
Perez soon kept improving and managed a 1m 05.773, which was quickly smashed by Bottas who had switched to soft tyres and posted a 1m 05.486.
It eventually would prove to be a Mercedes one-two finish after Bottas improved to 1m 05.172, which was smashed by Hamilton who topped FP1 with a 1m 04.816 and 0.356s clear of his teammate.
Max Verstappen finished third ahead of the McLaren duo of Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris, who had Perez sandwiching them in fifth.
Alex Albon, Daniel Ricciardo, Kevin Magnussen and Charles Leclerc rounded out the top ten.
Free Practice TwoEmbed from Getty Images
Grosjean was straight out on track in the afternoon session as he sought to make up for lost track time from FP1 through a brake pedal issue.
Many drivers ventured out on medium tyres as Racing Point’s Lance Stroll topped the opening 15 minutes with a 1m 05.469, whilst Daniil Kvyat spun at Turn One after running over the sausage kerb on entry.
Verstappen then went top six minutes later with a 1m 05.379 whilst Hamilton needed two flying laps on his first medium tyre run to eventually go fastest with a 1m 05.095.
Midway through the session, drivers switched focus on soft tyre one-lap runs as Perez went fastest initially with a 1m 04.945, which was bettered by Bottas immediately afterwards with a 1m 04.501 as Sebastian Vettel slotted into third just 0.015s behind Perez.Embed from Getty Images
Hamilton eventually snatched top spot with a stunning 1m 04.304 to make it another Mercedes one-two finish, with Perez this time finishing the session as best of the rest and 0.444s off Bottas’ time.
Verstappen and Stroll made errors on their soft qualifying run which ultimately saw them finish the session in seventh and eighth respectively, after Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris leap above the pair into fifth and sixth positions.
Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz rounded out the top ten for Ferrari and McLaren respectively.
Race runs saw Mercedes comfortably on top as Vettel ran wide at Turn Three after locking up on hard tyres, whilst Verstappen lost the rear on entry into Turn Six and went bouncing across the gravel before continuing on his way.
Albon meanwhile spun at the first corner after mounting the kerbs but was able to continue, as Mercedes looks the team to beat heading into the final practice session and Qualifying.
|1||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1m 04.816|
|2||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||1m 05.172|
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1m 05.418|
|4||Carlos Sainz||McLaren||1m 05.431|
|5||Sergio Perez||Racing Point||1m 05.512|
|6||Lando Norris||McLaren||1m 05.621|
|7||Alexander Albon||Red Bull||1m 05.701|
|8||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault||1m 05.860|
|9||Kevin Magnussen||Haas||1m 05.907|
|10||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||1m 05.924|
|11||Lance Stroll||Racing Point||1m 06.074|
|12||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||1m 06.077|
|13||Esteban Ocon||Renault||1m 06.270|
|14||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo||1m 06.360|
|15||Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo||1m 06.365|
|16||Pierre Gasly||Alpha Tauri||1m 06.404|
|17||George Russell||Williams||1m 06.495|
|18||Nicholas Latifi||Williams||1m 06.906|
|19||Daniil Kvyat||Alpha Tauri||1m 06.943|
|20||Romain Grosjean||Haas||1m 46.361|
|1||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1m 04.304|
|2||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||1m 04.501|
|3||Sergio Perez||Racing Point||1m 04.945|
|4||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||1m 04.961|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault||1m 04.972|
|6||Lando Norris||McLaren||1m 05.087|
|7||Lance Stroll||Racing Point||1m 05.135|
|8||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1m 05.215|
|9||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||1m 05.298|
|10||Carlos Sainz||McLaren||1m 05.352|
|11||Esteban Ocon||Renault||1m 05.415|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Alpha Tauri||1m 05.443|
|13||Alexander Albon||Red Bull||1m 05.453|
|14||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo||1m 05.608|
|15||Kevin Magnussen||Haas||1m 05.678|
|16||Romain Grosjean||Haas||1m 05.908|
|17||Pierre Gasly||Alpha Tauri||1m 06.016|
|18||George Russell||Williams||1m 06.125|
|19||Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo||1m 06.278|
|20||Nicholas Latifi||Williams||1m 07.124|