Hamilton dominates Austrian GP practice
Lewis Hamilton proved the man to beat in Friday practice after topping both sessions ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.
The reigning world champion dominated the two 90 minute outings as he went on to post a 1:04.579s benchmark on soft compound tyres.
Hamilton conducted runs on the ultrasoft rubber but was unable to better his personal best set on the harder tyres.
It proved to be a strong display from Mercedes as it debuted a heavily updated aero package on its cars.
The Silver Arrows completed a one-two in Practice 1 and 2 with Valtteri Bottas 0.176s adrift of Hamilton in the day’s final hit out.
Sebastian Vettel was third fastest as the Ferrari driver lapped within three tenths of the pacesetting Mercedes duo.
The four-time world champion was 0.2s faster than the Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo, who pipped his team-mate Max Verstappen to fourth.
Kimi Raikkonen guided the sister Ferrari to sixth position ahead of the Haas F1 pair of Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.
It proved to be an eventful session for Magnussen as he escaped two off track excursions at Turn 4 and Turn 9, before being told to stop the car in pitlane after being released with a loose front right wheel.
Pierre Gasly ended up ninth despite being forced to sit out the majority of Practice 2 after suffering suspension damage caused by running over the harsh kerbs on the exit of Turn 9.
The Toro Rosso driver caused a brief stoppage while his stricken car was retrieved from the gravel trap.
The top 10 was rounded out by McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne as he bounced back from a front wing failure in the opening session.
His team-mate Fernando Alonso endured a difficult day as a damaged floor restricted his running, before ending up 19th in the session behind Kiwi Brendon Hartley in 17th spot.
The field will return for Practice 3 on Saturday at 2000 AEST before qualifying takes place at 2300 AEST.
Result: Formula 1 Austrian Grand Prix Practice 1
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m05.072s||0.233s||42|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m05.483s||0.644s||22|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m06.055s||1.216s||40|
|10||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m06.394s||1.555s||36|
|14||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m06.455s||1.616s||42|
|19||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m06.871s||2.032s||45|
Result: Formula 1 Austrian Grand Prix Practice 2
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m05.031s||0.452s||48|
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m05.125s||0.546s||48|
|9||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m05.758s||1.179s||31|
|13||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m06.133s||1.554s||43|
|17||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m06.332s||1.753s||55|
|18||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m06.354s||1.775s||48|