Hamilton leads close first session in Monaco

2017 Monaco Grand Prix first practice

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Lewis Hamilton lapped quicker than last year’s pole position time in first practice at Monaco but the top five were covered by less than half a second.

The Mercedes driver established a new record for the current version of the Monaco Grand Prix circuit, which was last changed in 2015.

Monaco Grand Prix practice in pictures
Three different cars occupied the top three positions after the first 90 minutes of running. Sebastian Vettel was second-quickest after tapping the barriers on an early run and Max Verstappen rebounded from an early puncture to end the session third.

Less than a tenth of a second covered Verstappen from his team mate, yet the pair were split by the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas.

Daniil Kvyat impressed with the sixth-quickest time as both Toro Rosso drivers appeared in the top ten. They were separated by Kimi Raikkonen and the first Force India of Sergio Perez.

Monaco newcomer Esteban Ocon joined his team mate in the top ten, just two-tenths of a second splitting the VJM10s. In contrast there was almost a second between Williams’ experienced Felipe Massa in 11th and rookie Lance Stroll in 16th.

Jenson Button was 14th-quickest on his return to F1 for McLaren, a tenth of a second off team mate Stoffel Vandoorne.

Two drivers failed to set a time. Nico Hulkenberg’s Renauilt and Marcus Ericsson’s Sauber were not seen after their installation runs due to technical problems.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’13.42540
25Sebastian VettelFerrari1’13.6210.19634
333Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’13.7710.34632
477Valtteri BottasMercedes1’13.7910.36640
53Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’13.8540.42945
626Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’14.1110.68642
77Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’14.1640.73937
811Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’14.2010.77632
955Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’14.3330.90839
1031Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’14.4251.00039
1119Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’14.6171.19237
122Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Honda1’14.8131.38838
1320Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’14.8701.44534
1422Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’14.9541.52935
158Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’15.3211.89633
1618Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’15.5952.17044
1730Jolyon PalmerRenault1’15.9492.52442
1894Pascal WehrleinSauber-Ferrari1’16.2582.83333
1927Nico HulkenbergRenault
209Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari

First practice visual gaps

Lewis Hamilton – 1’13.425

+0.196 Sebastian Vettel – 1’13.621

+0.346 Max Verstappen – 1’13.771

+0.366 Valtteri Bottas – 1’13.791

+0.429 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’13.854

+0.686 Daniil Kvyat – 1’14.111

+0.739 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’14.164

+0.776 Sergio Perez – 1’14.201

+0.908 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’14.333

+1.000 Esteban Ocon – 1’14.425

+1.192 Felipe Massa – 1’14.617

+1.388 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’14.813

+1.445 Kevin Magnussen – 1’14.870

+1.529 Jenson Button – 1’14.954

+1.896 Romain Grosjean – 1’15.321

+2.170 Lance Stroll – 1’15.595

+2.524 Jolyon Palmer – 1’15.949

+2.833 Pascal Wehrlein – 1’16.258

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

Best times by tyre

DriverTeamBest ultra-soft timeUltra-soft gapBest super-soft timeSuper-soft gapBest soft timeSoft gap
Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’13.4251’15.3420.702None
Valtteri BottasMercedes1’13.7910.3661’15.1110.471None
Daniel RicciardoRed Bull1’13.9500.525NoneNone
Max VerstappenRed Bull1’13.8160.391NoneNone
Sebastian VettelFerrari1’13.6210.196NoneNone
Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’14.9871.562NoneNone
Sergio PerezForce India1’14.2010.776NoneNone
Esteban OconForce India1’14.8371.412NoneNone
Felipe MassaWilliams1’14.6171.192None4’21.096183.033
Lance StrollWilliams1’17.1493.724None4’17.096179.033
Jenson ButtonMcLaren1’14.9541.529None1’18.063
Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren1’14.8131.3881’16.0461.406None
Carlos Sainz JnrToro RossoNone1’14.6470.00713’17.096719.033
Daniil KvyatToro RossoNone1’14.6402’12.09654.033
Romain GrosjeanHaas1’15.3211.896None2’21.09663.033
Kevin MagnussenHaas1’14.8701.445None2’14.09656.033
Nico HulkenbergRenault1’55.06241.637NoneNone
Jolyon PalmerRenault1’16.6783.253NoneNone
Marcus EricssonSauber2’10.09656.671NoneNone
Pascal WehrleinSauber1’16.2582.833NoneNone

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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27 comments on “Hamilton leads close first session in Monaco”

  1. Somebody enlighten me why nobody runs Q3 all 10 minutes without going in. Is it tyre degradation, fuel or rule restriction?

    1. a mix of tyre deg and fuel, mostly fuel. Drivers are usually only fuelled for an out lap, a timed lap and an in lap so the car is as light as possible. Very rarely drivers will fuel for two flying laps but never a full session. The early laps would be a waste as the car will be heavier in the early laps and not as quick, then in the later laps by the time the excess fuel has burned off the tyres will be useless anyway

    2. @asilviug to do that you have to put more fuel in, hence more weight, so the cars would be slower, by the time they reach an ideal amount of fuel the tyres won’t have as much grip anymore, so basically they would waste 10 mins just going around without posting any meaningful times.

      I think this answer your question?

      1. it does but it still doesn’t make sense to me because I always see mistakes in Q3 and it seems a clean lap (with a heavier car and used tires ) still better than a lap with mistakes. I also see drivers putting relevant times on + 20 old tires during the race. Maybe 10 kilos extra could be an issue and lose you 0.2-0.3 but if you find the perfect lap….

        1. that’s true, but out of 10 drivers maybe 2-3 make mistakes on their two runs. Imagine Ham or Seb starting P7, that wouldn’t be any good for their aspirations.

          Also it makes them dependent on other drivers mistakes if they go for the whole 10 mins, if there isn’t any, P10 would be the best out of it.

          And if they all went into that scenario, some would start to do low fuel laps and get the reward out of it, eventually they all would start doing that again.

          They usually do two runs, even if they make a mistake in one, they have another to compensate. It always the best way to take performance out of the car

    3. Tyre allocation/degradation. Although round here it looks like it’s possible to go as fast if not quicker on the second flying lap. I think the drivers should be given one or two bonus sets of tyres to use for Q3, so we stop having this inevitable 5-6 minutes of inactivity from the front-runners after their first Q3 attempts.

    4. With the hybrid power units the drivers also only have full power for one lap at a time.

      It’s easier for the strategists and the drivers to stick to their out-lap, fast lap in-lap routine to ensure their car is in the optimum window for those fast laps.

  2. If these results are the same after qualy, then I will feel sorry for Bottas, in between the two red bull kamikazes.

    1. Ricciardo a kamikaze? or do you mean as in: late braker = kamikaze?

  3. The sad thing is I expect Kimi to be this far off Vettel. It’s just not a surprise anymore.

    1. He’s lost that killer instinct since joining Ferrari, I think. Last we saw of it was in the Lotus. Shame, really.

      1. Its frustrating watching Kimi not be where he “should” be on the grid consistently.

      2. I do wonder if his back surgery has had any impact.

      3. Or, is Vettel just that much better…

      4. I always wonder if that Lotus in 2012/13 was the best car on the grid…and the drivers underperformed. I think this more and more having seen kimi be outperformed by consecutive team mates at Ferrari.

    2. It’s FP1. His weekend is far from over at this point.

      1. You’re right. Actually, Kimi has usually been quite quick in FP1 this season and then faded through the weekend, so maybe we will see the opposite this time @huhhii

    3. At this point he is just collecting a paycheck. He has been like this for a while now.

    4. Fukobayashi (@)
      25th May 2017, 13:26

      He needs to vacate that seat for someone who’s going to do something with it.

      1. Agreed. Perez in red would be something.

  4. Toro Rosso’s looking intriguingly quick, used the super softs rather than ultra softs…

    1. Here’s to hoping that they’re right up there in qualifying. Would be fantastic to see.

    2. I think there could be some mistake with Toro Rossos. Their best times are .5 second quicker than their SS best times, so I suppose they’ve had US laps as well.

  5. ” In contrast there was 1.3 seconds between Williams’ experienced Felipe Massa in 11th and rookie Lance Stroll in 16th” – It was actually less than a second difference. @keithcollantine

  6. I’m impressed that Stroll was only one second off Massa and yet didn’t crash into the barriers.

    1. Maybe don’t read the second practice results then…

      1. +1. Haha……

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