(Motorsport-Total.com) – Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) secured the best time in the first free training session for the Spanish Grand Prix (Formula 1 2022 live in the ticker). The World Cup leader achieved a best time of 1: 19.828 minutes, which placed his teammates Carlos Sainz (+0.079) and Max Verstappen (Red Bull / + 0.336) in second place.
© Motorsports pictures
Charles Leclerc secured the best time in the first free practice
Interesting: Barcelona is traditionally the weekend with the big technology updates, and both Ferrari and Red Bull have followed suit. While Ferrari has adapted the chassis and rear wing, the chassis and front wing are new to the Red Bull. And RB18 has lost weight, “because our car is still too fat,” laughs Verstappen.
On the subject:
Result 1. free training
F1 live ticker: Voices about training
F1 livestream: analysis at 20.30
Helmut Marko: Vips did a great job
Also interesting: Verstappen set the best time in the first sector, 0.102 seconds ahead of Leclerc. But in the second sector he lost 0.105 and in the third 0.155 seconds to the Ferrari driver. Sergio Perez did not play in the first practice. In his place, Red Bull Junior Juri Vips finished as number 20 and last, 4,310 seconds left.
“Vips had certain tasks to solve. It was not time. He did it perfectly,” praises Red Bull motorsport consultant Helmut Marko in an interview with ‘Sky’. “The timing is not representative, because he is always stuck in traffic when he has the soft tires on. In general, we are happy with what he has shown.” (DISPLAY: All races are live without commercial breaks – exclusively on Sky.)
In terms of power, Marko expects a slight shift since Miami: “Ferrari has brought a big update. We were ahead on long distances. It changed a bit with the soft tires. But I think we are within a tenth”, he says.
Marko finds it “satisfying for us that the distance is so small despite the Ferrari update. Although I do not think we are where we should be in terms of balance yet. I assume it will be the usual duel that Ferrari against Red Bull is coming. “
Misunderstanding between Hamilton and Alonso
As so often, there was a first hole in the standings behind the top 3. George Russell in the completely refurbished Mercedes (including undercarriage and front end plate) took fourth place, but was already 0.762 seconds behind the best time. Fernando Alonso (Alpine / + 0.940) was fifth, Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes / + 0.983) sixth.
There was a near-collision between Alonso and Hamilton as Hamilton was on his fastest lap as he ran into Alonso and was simply overlooked by the Spaniard. Hamilton had to run out on the curbs on the outside and probably lost the 0.221 seconds that Russell missed in the end. The FIA is investigating the incident after the session.
For the teams, the first free training session was more important than ever, because with the exception of Haas, everyone in Barcelona comes out with some significant updates. McLaren has reported ten new components to the FIA, Alfa Romeo and Aston Martin at least eight. The B version of the Aston Martin was initially the general topic of conversation on Friday.
Aston Martin legal according to FIA
Because Sebastian Vettel’s green races are astonishingly similar to Red Bull in the area by the side pods. During an investigation, the FIA made sure that everything was done correctly. But Red Bull is of the opinion that the design should be copied from RB18.
“Can’t expect quantum leap”: Vettel before 1st FT on updates
Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin go into the weekend in Barcelona with a lot of changes on the car
Vettel finished 15th as he went out on fresh soft to the very end of the session. Apparently, however, he did not aim for a time chase as the German could not improve and finished 16th – 0.018s after Mick Schumacher (15th / Haas) and 0.244s after teammate Lance Stroll (12th).
How powerful are the McLaren updates?
McLaren presented itself strongly, traditionally quite conservatively Friday morning. Lando Norris finished seventh, half a second ahead of Daniel Ricciardo. “It was positive that we had a good session and no problems with the new parts,” analyzed team manager Andreas Seidl in an interview with ‘ORF’.
But: Ricciardo with several new parts was half a second slower than Norris. Seidl puts it in perspective: “We drove different configurations with the two cars. It was a positive start. But it’s still too early to say where we stand. The others have also brought updates.”
By the way: Besides Vips in Red Bull, two other Friday drivers were also in action. Robert Kubica finished 13th in the Alfa Romeo, 2,147 seconds behind. Nyck de Vries finished 18th in Williams, which is usually run by Alexander Albon. He was 0.091 seconds faster than teammate Nicholas Latifi.