Vettel ends first morning session as fastest

  • 18 Feb 2019 13:00
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Sebastian Vettel ended the first pre-season as the fastest driver, storming to the top spot with a 1:18.161. 

Vettel's lap time is already quicker than last year's opening day fastest lap which was set by Daniel Ricciardo, a 1:20.179. However, conditions today are much warmer than twelve months ago.

Sergio Perez got Racing Point's on-track debut off to a strong start, as he ended the session in second place. However, the Mexican was 1.8 seconds down on Vettel's time. 

Valtteri Bottas ended the say in third place, with his time two-tenths slower than the Racing Point. Fourth saw Kimi Raikkonen, who suffered an early setback after he spun into the gravel within minutes after the first green flag.

Raikkonen caused a red flag which caused a session delay, however he wasn't the only one as Romain Grosjean's Haas lost fuel pressure, forcing him to pull to the side of the track in the final sector.

The Frenchman ended the session in eighth place, behind the Red Bull's Max Verstappen, who started Red Bull-Honda's on-track relationship, the McLaren of Carlos Sainz and the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg. 

Daniil Kvyat rounded out the timesheets. In the afternoon, Daniel Ricciardo will climb into the Renault while Lewis Hamilton will take over duties in the Mercedes.

ES Circuit de Catalunya - 18 February 2019

Photos Barcelona, February 18, 2019

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