June 5, 2023

Australian Grand Prix: Verstappen leads FP1, Hamilton takes P2 at last

Max Verstappen was the fastest driver in the first free practice for the Australian Grand Prix, the third round of the 2023 Formula 1 season, which took place on Thursday (30) in Melbourne.

Verstappen clocked a 1:18.790 and led Red Bull 1:2 with Sergio Pérez in second, but in the closing stages of the 60-minute session Lewis Hamilton moved up to P2, just under half a second behind the leader.

Fernando Alonso finished fourth, continuing the good run of the Aston Martin team. On the other side of the garage, Lance Stroll finished 10th.

Ferrari finished in P5 and P6, respectively Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz. It wasn’t an ideal start for the Scuderia, as Monaco was more than seven-tenths behind P1 Verstappen.

Lando Norris was seventh for McLaren, while fellow rookie Oscar Piastri was 12th. The Australian is making his F1 debut in front of his home crowd.

Of the top ten, George Russell (Mercedes) was eighth and Pierre Gasly (Alpine) ninth.

The session was marred by two red flags. At first, the cars GPS stops working, causing a moment of chaos among the pilots. In second, Logan Sargeant had problems with his Williams and stopped on the track with four minutes to go in FP1. The session has been declared over.

Formula 1 returns at dawn on Friday (31) at 02:00 BST, with the second practice session valid for the Australian F1 GP. F1Mania tracks all F1 action live from Melbourne.

Check out the FP1 result of the F1 Australian GP:
1) Max Verstappen (Red Bull/Honda RBPT), 1’18.790
2) Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), 19.19.223
3) Sergio Pérez (Red Bull/Honda RBPT) at min 19.293
4) Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin/Mercedes), 1’19.317
5) Charles Leclerc (Ferrari), 1’19.378
6) Carlos Sainz Jr (Ferrari), 1’19505
7) Lando Norris (McLaren/Mercedes), 1’19.536
8) Pierre Gasly (Alpine/Renault), 1’19.646
9) George Russell (Mercedes) 1,699,699
10) Lance Stroll (Aston Martin/Mercedes), 1’19.766
11) Alexander Albon (Williams/Mercedes), 1’19.766
12) Oscar Piastri (McLaren/Mercedes), 1’19,777
13) Nico Hulkenberg (Haas/Ferrari), 1’19.806
14) Nick De Vries (AlphaTauri/Honda RBPT), 1’19,933
15) Logan Sargeant (Williams/Mercedes), 1’20.074
16) Esteban Ocon (Alpine/Renault), 1’20.175
17) Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri/Honda RBPT), 1’20.399
18) Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo/Ferrari), 1’20.419
19) Zhou Guanyu (Alfa Romeo/Ferrari), 1’20.569
20) Kevin Magnussen (Haas/Ferrari), 1’21.147

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