Max Verstappen picked up where he left off last weekend in Monte Carlo, to top the schedules for the first practice session in Spain. The championship leader was comfortably ahead of Red Bull team mate Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon in the Alps in preparation for this weekend’s match.
Under the hot Spanish sun, which saw track temperatures soar to 43 degrees Celsius, it proved to be ideal temperatures for the drivers to test the new model. Pirelli tire construction Before using it at next month’s race at Silverstone.
Several drivers chose to start the day with a run on standard tires before switching to media, with Verstappen setting the early pace ahead of former and current Red Bull team mates Pierre Gasly and Perez.
Then the Red Bull pair made an early switch to the soft tyre, as Perez shot to the top of the leaderboard, only for Verstappen to set a time of 1min 14.606sec, besting his teammate’s time by a whopping 0.768sec, just moments later.
Having finished on the podium last time in Monaco, Ocon finished third in the standings, ahead of AlphaTauri’s surprise Nic de Vries in fourth, and Alpine team-mate Gasly in fifth.
Home favorite Fernando Alonso is sixth in the list of fastest Aston Martins, ahead of Haas’ Kevin Magnussen, and the Ferrari pair of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in eighth and ninth respectively – with Sainz the only one running his upgraded kit in FP1.
George Russell and Lewis Hamilton – the latter a six-time winner at Barcelona – finished 10th and 12th respectively for Mercedes with Lando Norris’ McLaren between them.
Zhou Guanyu, in his Alfa Romeo, was fastest in 13th, ahead of the other AlphaTauri of Yuki Tsunoda, and the second Aston Martin of Lance Stroll down in 15th.
Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas was 16th, ahead of McLaren rookie Oscar Piastri in 17th, and Haas’ Nico Hulkenberg, while the Williams pair of Logan Sargeant and Alex Albon finished at the bottom of the field.
Join us again at 1700 local time for the second practice session ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix this weekend.