McLaren lead practice one in Spain

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Lewis Hamilton was quickest in first practice in Barcelona

Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button got McLaren’s Spanish Grand Prix weekend off to a strong start by topping the times sheets in the first practice session.

Michael Schumacher put the revised Mercedes third fastest as practice got started at the Circuit de Catalunya.

The first driver to set a lap was Timo Glock, trying the revised version of the VR-01. The car shed its left turning vane on its first lap of the Barcelona track and Glock spent much of the next hour in the pits.

Felipe Massa made an early start for Ferrari, setting the fastest time to begin with using the team’s version of the F-duct for the first time.

Team mate Fernando Alonso also tried the blown rear wing and did back-to-back tests with the F10 in its ‘unblown’ configuration.

Over at Mercedes, Michael Schumacher put the first laps on the updated W01 with its distinctive new airbox. He briefly took over the top of the times sheets but was demoted by the two McLarens.

Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton waited until the half-way point of the session before taking to the track. Button went quickest to begin with before being beaten by his team mate with a 1’21.134.

Another team running a significant upgrade package this weekend are Lotus. Heikki Kovalainen’s best time was 4.1 seconds off the quickest, with a two second gap to the midfield, suggesting they have made progress.

Towards the end of the session Nico Hulkenberg stopped on the track, a puff of smoke from the rear of his Williams suggesting he’d suffered an engine failure.

Pedro de la Rosa also ended his session early after suffering a gearbox failure on his Sauber, failing to set a time. And Button had to abort a run after running over debris on his way out of the pits, damaging the floor on his McLaren.

At HRT, Christian Klien made his first appearance as a reserve driver since 2007 – and beat regular driver Bruno Senna by half a second.

Pos. Car Driver Car Best lap Laps
1 2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1’21.134 21
2 1 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’21.672 0.538 14
3 3 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’21.716 0.582 12
4 6 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’22.011 0.877 27
5 5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’22.026 0.892 22
6 4 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’22.070 0.936 19
7 11 Robert Kubica Renault 1’22.202 1.068 22
8 8 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’22.258 1.124 19
9 12 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’22.397 1.263 23
10 23 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1’22.492 1.358 26
11 16 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’22.588 1.454 24
12 7 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’22.975 1.841 22
13 14 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’23.030 1.896 21
14 17 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’23.110 1.976 31
15 15 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1’23.284 2.15 19
16 9 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1’23.312 2.178 22
17 10 Nico Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1’23.471 2.337 20
18 19 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1’25.329 4.195 17
19 18 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1’26.244 5.11 20
20 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1’26.340 5.206 23
21 25 Lucas di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1’26.694 5.56 24
22 20 Christian Klien HRT-Cosworth 1’27.250 6.116 26
23 21 Bruno Senna HRT-Cosworth 1’27.752 6.618 27
24 22 Pedro de la Rosa Sauber-Ferrari 3

2010 Spanish Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    37 comments on “McLaren lead practice one in Spain”

    1. Looks like McLaren have the advantage. Going to be interesting for Qualifying, I think a McLaren on the front row with Vettel possibly.

      1. I hate to admit it .. but it doesn’t look like Ferrari are gonna make the front row. They were definitely struggling with the F-Duct today, and have wasted an entire session just testing a particular part. Lets hope they can turn it around in FP2

        1. I think they’ll have the race pace though. Well Alonso will anyway, I still think Alonso can take the win.

          1. Ferrari are always nowhere in practice as are Red Bull while Mclaren usually are near front as is Rosberg. Mclaren probably are quicker and they need to be but its first practice a lot can happen so don’t write off Ferrari just yet

            1. Yep. That ^

              I was gonna say the same. Getting old hearing people freak every FP and say “Ferrari and Red Bull are slow!”

      2. It’s way to early to say anything yet. Just look on any of the FP1 and FP2 so far this year and you can see the order doesn’t get established really until FP3 generally. So much depends on what program they run and frequently Ferrari and RedBull both for example seem to run heavier fuel loads during FP1&2 and not until FP3 they run light fuel load runs. How often have RBR been bit down in FP1&2 but stolen the show in FP3 and Quali?

    2. Quite a typical practice session; McLarens at the top, Ferraris in the midfield and Kubica on 7th.

      The Williams seem to be struggling.

    3. It’s too early to say the McLaren are definitely on top, Red Bull are famous for sandbagging on Fridays. The revised Mercedes seems to be more to MSC’s liking, but again, we’ll have to wait and see if he is starting to turn the tide on Nico.

      Great to see Lotus have made a good step forward, and Klien’s input should assist HRT’s progress.

      1. Just noticed that the 8 Cosworth powered cars were also the 8 slowest cars to set a time.

        1. It’s been like that once or twice in Friday sessions this year.

      2. I don’t think Red Bull are Sand Bagging but merely concentrating on race pace rather than qualifying pace as this is their weakness, McLaren appears to be the opposite

    4. The difference between the times set by Kovalainen and Trulli is big, did the do different things with fuel loads or comparing parts?

      Virgin is shedding parts on track again, wat were the rates on that in betting Branson?

      Klein shows he knows how to drive a F1 car, he does know the track a little better in this equipment than Senna does.

    5. go klien!!! sauber are sponsored bby nurger king for this race!

    6. McLaren have been always fast on fridays, thinking even that last year’s lap record was Vettel’s 1.19.9 and this year’s cars seems even to be fastest: so I won’t give much importance on this.
      Interestingly Ferrari have the top speed of 310 km/h which makes me think that their f-duct works properly on the f10

    7. Nothing unusual really with this mornings practice, except Schumi being 3rd of course… lets hope this is the turn around we’ve been waiting for… and I hope the changes have not affected Nico badly.

      However, again, we don’t know the fuel loads…

      …for Michael & Nico
      …for Hamilton & Button
      …for McLaren, Red Bull & Ferrari (who are pretty much always midfield on Fridays)

      Only positives are that McLaren should be there or thereabouts in Qualy and the Race, and Schumi has started well.

      Roll on FP2

    8. Jarred Walmsley
      7th May 2010, 11:22

      It does seem that the new Mercedes works well for both drivers which is always good, hopefully we’ll see a return to form for Michael this weekend

    9. Maybe McLaren are getting there to get the car on the first row, i am thinking of Lewis there. But Red Bull have never gone for the best times on the Fridays, just like Ferrari they are rather concentrating on race pace.

      Are there any pictures of the Burger King logo on Saubars cars?
      Where are they compared to testing times or last years times? If I remember this year times were below 1.20 in the end of testing.

      1. Mclaren needs to get their qualifying right, that has been their weak point this season so far.

    10. Paul di Resta beats Vitantonio Liuzzi also with 3 tens or Sutil car is faster or he was running lighter. Putting Klien in the HRT is bad for Senna morale.

    11. Massa is 7 tenths of Alonso!! Quite a lot.

      He needs to up his pace significantly. Otherwise the Kubika-to-Ferrari rumors might turn true.

      Good to see Schumi beating Rosberg. But still, if they are behind Mclaren, then they are behind RedBull as well (who are surely sandbagging). But can expect Schumi to beat Massa in qualifying.

      My predictions for Q3: Vettel, Hamilton, Webber, Alonso, Button, Schumi, Rosberg, Massa in that order.

      BTW, where is the predictions page for Spanish GP?

      1. It’s only practice. Massa needs to up his game but it’s too soon to judge this weekend. He spent a lot of time out on track first when the track is at its worst plus he went off which was probably due to him carrying far too much speed while getting used to the F Duct

        1. Massa is certainly under some pressure, but it’s early yet in the season.

          What does concern me about him, is that Rob Smedley is frequently telling him how to drive the car… “brake later into the corner”, “get on the power earlier”… This time telling him not to “turn off” the blown wing until the very end of the straight.

          But, if it works and brings Massa back competitive with Alonso, then I guess that is all that matters.

      2. I don’t think the decision to move Kubica will be decided in one race so it’s early days for that kind of thing to happen.But it’s true Massa needs to bring out his claws to make sure that the management don’t even think about replacing him.

    12. GP2 dallara: Sam Bird 1m28.511
      F1 dallara: Senna 1:27.752

      1. I remember Bruno Senna saying that Dallara expected the “F1 Dallara” to be 2 seconds a lap faster than the GP2 car at the begining of the season…something just isn’t happening at the end of the pit lane. I’m confident they will be able to turn it around though.

    13. I am kinda disappointed at lotus. They talked about have a more organic engine cover shape for this race, but I can hardly tell it’s new. Still looks like a soap box.

      Wouldn’t mind if you could make an article on all of the updates of the cars which includes picture comparisons :D !

    14. Keith

      Is it only me or there was some problem with Liveblog.
      I tried it on both Google chrome and Internet Explorer but there was no liveblog box and only comments section was there.

    15. jochenrindt
      7th May 2010, 11:57

      does anyone know what Button ran over in the pits?

      1. Even I am curious…Does not look like it belonged to hiss car as well…Virgin maybe?

        1. Yeah, I understood it as something from someone else’s car rather than his own, causing McLaren to check his floor was not damaged.

    16. Encouraging to see Schumacher in the top three. Lets hope this translates into a better grid position tomorrow and better race position on Sunday.

    17. McLaren always go “faster” in practice then everybody else, so how does this make any improvement catching the Red Bulls and Ferrari’s? vettel and mark mostly stay in 5th-8th in practice runs until it’s worth going for.

      Who do you think is more under control atm, the guy in the red bull who isn’t trying very hard but gets pole posistion every qualifying stage, or the guy in the McLaren who gets top of the practice times but fails to get close to the Red Bulls in quali.

      If you see mark and vettel group together on time sheets in practice 3, 70% of the time it means they are going to do well in both qualifying and the race because they are holding back I reckon.

      2009 examples:
      •Chinese GP, 3rd practice/ vettel 16th mark 15th
      Result in qualifying vettel 1st mark 3rd,
      Race result vettel 1st mark 2nd.

      •German GP, 3rd practice/ vettel 4th mark 5th
      Result in qualifying vettel 4th mark 1st,
      Race result vettel 2nd mark 1st.

      •Hungary GP, 3rd practice/ vettel 10th mark 9th
      Result in qualifying vettel 2nd mark 3rd,
      Race result vettel RET mark 3rd.

      This is just what i checked up last year sometimes it doesn’t happen so I could be off a bit.

    18. Even I am curious as it did not seem that it belonged to his car…….Virgin maybe?

    19. Seems like the usual FP1, with McLaren ahead and RBR sandbagging, but two things stand out:

      – Hamilton ahead of Button by 0.5 seconds. Could be crucial if even half of that advantage carries over to Q3.
      – Klien 0.5 seconds faster than Senna in a car he’s never driven before. I’d like to see Bruno do well, and think he will mature into a better driver in the same way Massa did, but I think this shows the hype over him was quite premature.

    20. Senna complained about using a friday-driver. Maybe he´ll become HRT´s new friday-driver…

    21. Vitaly Petrov is really impressing me so far between the Rookies.Also nice to see Kamui Kobayashi having a trouble free day with the car but still the reliability trouble with the Ferrari.

    22. Impressive work for Klien to get that far above Senna in his first F1 drive in a few years.

      Hopefully he gets another drive somewhere, because otherwise he will be a bit of a wasted talent. Maybe Sauber next year if de la Rosa retires.

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