Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Interlagos, 2015

Mercedes drivers lead Vettel as Raikkonen spins

2015 Brazilian Grand Prix first practice

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Lewis Hamilton led the times in first practice at Interlagos by over half a second, though the top drivers spent much of the session separated by considerably less.

His lap of 1’13.543 was around eight tenths of a second off the best time seen in the same session 12 months ago. Drivers found the performance of their medium compound rubber dropped off quickly with the track temperature around 35C.

Sebastian Vettel ended the session just over a tenth of a second slower than the second Mercedes of Nico Rosberg. Both Ferrari drivers had minor offs during the first 90 minutes of practice – Vettel at Juncao shortly after the session began, Raikkonen in the final few minutes at Descida do Lago.

Afterwards Raikkonen was asked to return to the pits to lay rubber in the box, which he did with some reluctance. “The tyres are completely gone,” he replied. “I don’t see a point to even drive around with the car full of sand.” He ended the session fifth-fastest behind Daniel Ricciardo.

Max Verstappen also spun in the first few minutes of the session at the Curva do Sol, the Toro Rosso ending up broadside across the track. He was one of several drivers to point out how quickly tyre performance decreased after the first flaying lap. Verstappen was eighth-quickest behind Daniil Kvyat and Valtteri Bottas as the chequered flag fell.

Of the two local drivers Felipe Nasr surprisingly ended up ahead of the Williams of Felipe Massa. The latter had a minor drama when he hit the raised kerb at turn two and skidded wide. The circuit owners have also added higher kerbs at turns three, four, five, eighth and ten which may have contributed to the slightly slower lap times.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’13.54328
26Nico RosbergMercedes1’14.0620.51936
35Sebastian VettelFerrari1’14.1680.62527
43Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’14.4490.90627
57Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’14.5491.00620
626Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault1’14.6961.15325
777Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’14.8861.34325
833Max VerstappenToro Rosso-Renault1’14.9601.41738
927Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’15.1741.63133
1013Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Mercedes1’15.1921.64931
1155Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’15.3141.77138
1230Jolyon PalmerLotus-Mercedes1’15.3521.80933
1322Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’15.3791.83628
1412Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1’15.3811.83829
1511Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’15.4081.86532
1614Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1’15.4131.87029
1719Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’15.4691.92624
189Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’15.7982.25534
1953Alexander RossiManor-Ferrari1’17.8604.31723
2028Will StevensManor-Ferrari1’18.0904.54722

First practice visual gaps

Lewis Hamilton – 1’13.543

+0.519 Nico Rosberg – 1’14.062

+0.625 Sebastian Vettel – 1’14.168

+0.906 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’14.449

+1.006 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’14.549

+1.153 Daniil Kvyat – 1’14.696

+1.343 Valtteri Bottas – 1’14.886

+1.417 Max Verstappen – 1’14.960

+1.631 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’15.174

+1.649 Pastor Maldonado – 1’15.192

+1.771 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’15.314

+1.809 Jolyon Palmer – 1’15.352

+1.836 Jenson Button – 1’15.379

+1.838 Felipe Nasr – 1’15.381

+1.865 Sergio Perez – 1’15.408

+1.870 Fernando Alonso – 1’15.413

+1.926 Felipe Massa – 1’15.469

+2.255 Marcus Ericsson – 1’15.798

+4.317 Alexander Rossi – 1’17.860

+4.547 Will Stevens – 1’18.090

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

Author information

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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12 comments on “Mercedes drivers lead Vettel as Raikkonen spins”

  1. No rain :(

  2. Well we’re expecting 1:09.xxx times so these time don’t matter.

  3. The British press will be gutted that Hamilton topped the times, given that they’re carrying on now as though he’s the Kurt Cobain of F1 …

    1. Well maybe he shouldn’t have said the reason he crashed at 3.Am was down to partying, not very smart on his part, as people will assume he was drink driving. I assumed that, until I read more on it.

      1. Shouldn’t assume then…why can’t he party anyway he just won the championship and it’s his mothers birthday? Naughty Lewis you can’t have a life of your own because fans of F1 will spit their dummies out and cry all night about how you’re not doing exactly what they expect you to do.

        1. What so you think that was a sane excuse Lewis give? Seriously bro, I’m not assuming anything, but my friends who are non followers of F1 asked me was Lewis drink driving. You know partying, 3A.M, Monaco, Crash…doesn’t sound good.

          1. It’s not like he’s going to say “Sorry officer I was seeing how fast I could get my zonda round that corner compared to the F1 one cars apparently I can’t haha” Furthermore I haven’t read anything showing Hamilton said it was because of partying I know the media are very clever at twisting statements. Attending his mums birthday ‘party’ doesn’t mean stumbling out of the Winchester trying to run down zombies with his car. (As much as the papers will like you to think)

    2. Apart from Cobain’s ending, what’s the problem being compared with him anyway?

    3. But he only managed 28 laps, 8 less than Nico! Surely his partying has sapped his endurance…

  4. So how long are the Softs going to last, if the Mediums faded so quickly?

  5. Kvyat is just 0.2 s behind Ricciardo with old engine.

    1. @regs Which is pretty much exactly what Ricciardo predicted – if anything slightly better.

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