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FP1: Hamilton leads Mercedes 1-2 after first practice in Austria

  • Published on 03 Jul 2020 12:31
  • comments 2
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Lewis Hamilton has ended the opening practice session of the 2020 Formula 1 season on top of the timesheets, posting a 1:04.816.

The six-time world champion gave the all-new black Mercedes livery its debut as his team pushes to increase and improve diversity within its organisation.

Having dominated the turbo-hybrid era since 2014, Mercedes started the new season strongly with Valtteri Bottas following his teammate home in second place.

Max Verstappen, who is being tipped as a title contender this season was third fastest for Red Bull, six-tenths down on Hamilton.

The session started in slightly damp conditions, with drivers taking to the Red Bull Ring in with the intermediate tyres attached. However, they soon swapped over the slick compounds as conditions improved. 

As McLaren looks to build on its strong 2019 campaign that saw it finish fourth in the constructors' standings, Carlos Sainz was fourth fastest during practice, while his teammate Lando Norris was sixth.

Lodged between the two papaya-coloured cars was Sergio Perez, who had smoke puffing from his engine earlier in the session - however after Racing Point investigated the matter, it found nothing of concern.

The second Red Bull of Alexander Albon was seventh, ahead of Daniel Ricciardo who stuck to a single set of medium tyres throughout the session. 

Kevin Magnussen was ninth for Haas, while Charles Leclerc was the sole Ferrari inside the top ten. Sebastian Vettel, who is heading into his final year at the Maranello squad, was 12th behind Lance Stroll.

No driver made contact with the walls during the 90 minutes of running, however a piece of bodywork from the bargeboard of Esteban Ocon's car flew off, which had to be recovered by a marshal.

Verstappen also had a spin during the session, while Pierre Gasly found himself facing the wrong way at the final corner in the latter stages. 

Photos Austria 2020

AT Red Bull Ring - 03 July 2020

Replies (2)

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  • Well, it is still just FP1, but I feel that the moment Ferrari bummed out on upgrading their stuff, they lost their chances at challenging Merc' and RBH truly.

    • + 0
    • Jul 3 2020 - 15:41
  • abhidbgt

    Posts: 283

    We should be ready for a total domination by Mercedes. They are half a second ahead on a track that is less than 4.2 km long. This could turn into three competitions. One where two Mercedes driver compete for victory. Second where 3-4 teams compete for second place in constructor championship. Third the competition to not be last.

    • + 1
    • Jul 3 2020 - 16:42

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Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
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26 - Mar 28
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16 - Apr 18
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7 - May 9
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21 - May 23
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4 - Jun 6
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11 - Jun 13
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25 - Jun 27
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16 - Jul 18
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30 - Aug 1
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10 - Sep 12
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1 - Oct 3
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22 - Oct 24
United States of America
29 - Oct 31
Mexico
5 - Nov 7
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19 - Nov 21
Australia
3 - Dec 5
Saudi Arabia
10 - Dec 12
United Arab Emirates
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
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26 - Mar 28
16 - Apr 18
7 - May 9
21 - May 23
Monaco Monte Carlo
4 - Jun 6
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
11 - Jun 13
25 - Jun 27
France Paul Ricard
2 - Jul 4
Austria Red Bull Ring
16 - Jul 18
United Kingdom Silverstone
30 - Aug 1
Hungary Hungaroring
27 - Aug 29
3 - Sep 5
Netherlands Circuit Zandvoort
10 - Sep 12
Italy Monza
24 - Sep 26
Russian Sochi Autodrom
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22 - Oct 24
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