Formula 1 News

Hamilton on top in opening practice

The Brit showed more confidence in his machine. He was followed Vettel's Red Bull.
Friday, July 29, 2011

BUDAPEST, July 29, 2011 (AFP) - In-form Briton Lewis Hamilton topped the times for McLaren in Friday's opening free practice session for Sunday's Hungarian Grand Prix.

The 26-year-old Englishman, clearly in the mood to compete on the edge, clocked a best time of 1min 23.350secs as he outpaced nearest rival and defending champion German Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull by two-tenths of a second.

Two-times champion Spaniard Fernando Alonso wound up third for Ferrari on his 30th birthday, narrowly ahead of Australian Mark Webber of Red Bull. Webber had a major 'off' during the session when he ran wide over a wet patch of run-off area, lost control and hit the barriers. His car suffered a broken front wing and front left wheel puncture.

Hamilton's McLaren team-mate and fellow-Briton Jenson Button was fifth fastest, the 2009 champion out-speeding Brazilian Felipe Massa, back on the track where he suffered a life-threatening accident in 2009, in the second Ferrari.

German Nico Rosberg was seventh ahead of his compatriot and Mercedes team-mate seven-times champion Michael Schumacher.

Mexican Sergio Perez was ninth for Sauber and Russian Vitaly Petrov, who has drawn a vast following of fans to the race, was 10th for Renault. Just as Hamilton was still in a determined and triumphant mood, so Vettel still appeared to be disenchanted and uncharacteristically downbeat.

Asked what happened in Germany, where Hamilton had won and he had missed a podium finish for the first time this year in 10 races, he said: "There's no point trying to find excuses. "But I didn't feel comfortable Friday to Sunday. It was tricky with the conditions, it was very cold, Mark Webber was quicker all weekend and I never really found good balance. "We have understood most of it but now we need to refocus on this race. We want to be on the top again."

Here are the results:

HUNGARIAN GRAND PRIX PRACTICE 1 TIMES (FP1)
POS No. DRIVER TEAM TIME GAP LAPS
1 3 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:23.350 19
2 1 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 1:23.564 0.214 24
3 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:23.642 0.292 29
4 2 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 1:23.666 0.316 12
5 4 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:23.772 0.422 20
6 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:24.115 0.765 25
7 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:24.250 0.900 22
8 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:24.369 1.019 20
9 17 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1:24.620 1.270 24
10 10 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1:25.093 1.743 22
11 16 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:25.113 1.763 21
12 15 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1:25.336 1.986 22
13 14 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:25.357 2.007 17
14 11 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:25.836 2.486 24
15 9 Bruno Senna Renault 1:25.855 2.505 25
16 18 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 1:25.890 2.540 28
17 19 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 1:26.099 2.749 36
18 12 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1:26.124 2.774 25
19 20 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1:26.878 3.528 26
20 21 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault 1:27.352 4.002 21
21 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:28.533 5.183 30
22 25 Jerome d'Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1:28.903 5.553 22
23 23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1:29.059 5.709 24
24 22 Daniel Ricciardo HRT-Cosworth 1:29.904 6.554 26

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