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FP1: Vettel heads opening session in Sochi

  • Published on 28 Sep 2018 11:30
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Sebastian Vettel has topped the first practice session in Russia, setting a best lap time of 1:34.488 The German will be hoping to take the spoils this weekend as he looks into eating away at Lewis Hamilton's championship lead. 

Red Bull will be encouraged by its early pace, as Max Verstappen ended the session just half a tenth of a second behind Vettel. However, Daniel Ricciardo's session was less impressive, as he was forced to take off his helmet early as his car was hit with issues.

Both Red Bull's will start the race from towards the back of the field as they revert to Renault's 'spec B' engine. Smoke was spotted billowing from the rear of Ricciardo's car as he came back into the pits after a run, but Ricciardo says that the mechanic's extensive work on the following the smoke was just a precaution.

Mercedes ended the session in third and fourth, with championship leader Lewis Hamilton leading his teammate Valtteri Bottas. Ricciardo ended up behind the Silver Arrows duo.

Esteban Ocon showed impressive pace in his Force India, finishing the session ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in seventh place. Kevin Magnussen, who was confirmed as a Haas driver for 2019 this morning, set the eighth fastest time of the ninety-minute session.

Nico Hulkenberg was ninth, however Renault came over the radio towards the end of the session telling the German that there was an issue with the car. Behind Hulkenberg in P10 was Antonio Giovinazzi in the Sauber, who will line-up full time for the Swiss squad next year.

Giovinazzi was the only junior free practice driver that managed to get inside the top ten. Lando Norris, who will race with McLaren alongside Carlos Sainz next year was P13, and was lucky to avoid the barriers after a spin early in the session.

Artem Markelov was P15 in the Renault, ahead of the outgoing McLaren driver Stoffel Vandoorne and Force India's Nicolas Latifi, who took over Sergio Perez's car for the morning outing.

Photos Russia 2018

RU Sochi Autodrom - 28 September 2018

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Driver profile

  • Team Red Bull Racing
  • Points 1,558
  • Podiums 60
  • Grand Prix 141
  • Country NL
  • Date of b. Sep 30 1997 (24)
  • Place of b. Hasselt (Belgie), NL
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
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Bahrain
26 - Mar 28 2021
Bahrain
16 - Apr 18 2021
Italy
30 - May 2 2021
Portugal
7 - May 9 2021
Spain
20 - May 23 2021
Monaco
4 - Jun 6 2021
Azerbaijan
18 - Jun 20 2021
France
25 - Jun 27 2021
Austria
2 - Jul 4 2021
Austria
16 - Jul 18 2021
United Kingdom
30 - Aug 1 2021
Hungary
27 - Aug 29 2021
Belgium
3 - Sep 5 2021
Netherlands
10 - Sep 12 2021
Italy
24 - Sep 26 2021
Russian
8 - Oct 10 2021
Japan
8 - Oct 10 2021
Turkey
22 - Oct 24 2021
United States of America
5 - Nov 7 2021
Mexico
12 - Nov 14 2021
Brazil
19 - Nov 21 2021
Qatar
3 - Dec 5 2021
Saudi Arabia
10 - Dec 12 2021
United Arab Emirates
-
United Arab Emirates
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
26 - Mar 28 2021
16 - Apr 18 2021
30 - May 2 2021
7 - May 9 2021
20 - May 23 2021
Monaco Monte Carlo
4 - Jun 6 2021
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
18 - Jun 20 2021
France Paul Ricard
25 - Jun 27 2021
Austria Red Bull Ring
2 - Jul 4 2021
Austria Red Bull Ring
16 - Jul 18 2021
United Kingdom Silverstone
30 - Aug 1 2021
Hungary Hungaroring
27 - Aug 29 2021
3 - Sep 5 2021
Netherlands Circuit Zandvoort
10 - Sep 12 2021
Italy Monza
24 - Sep 26 2021
Russian Sochi Autodrom
8 - Oct 10 2021
8 - Oct 10 2021
Turkey Istanbul Park
22 - Oct 24 2021
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
5 - Nov 7 2021
12 - Nov 14 2021
Brazil Interlagos
19 - Nov 21 2021
3 - Dec 5 2021
Saudi Arabia Jeddah Street Circuit
10 - Dec 12 2021
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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