Hamilton breaks track record on hardest tyres in first session

2017 Austrian Grand Prix first practice

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Lewis Hamilton set a new track record at the Red Bull using the hardest of the three tyre compounds available during first practice.

The Mercedes driver set a best time of 1’05.975 on the soft rubber, bettering the previous record of 1’06.228 he set during qualifying last year.

Austrian Grand Prix practice in pictures
He was separated from team mate Valtteri Bottas at the top of the times by Max Verstappen, who got his Red Bull within two-tenths of Hamilton’s time at the team’s home track. Verstappen ended an eventful session by spinning at the turn three hairpin.

He damaged his car earlier after a mistake at turn seven. He had to return to the pits after skating across the turn seven gravel trap and glancing a barrier.

Behind Bottas was Sebastian Vettel in the first of the Ferraris, both of which had spins during the session. Vettel rotated after thumping the turn one apex kerb, which left him facing the wrong way at the exit of the turn.

Kimi Raikkonen lost his SF70H under braking for the same corner, spinning at speed and ruining his first set of super-softs in the process. He was quickly back out on a fresh set to continue his programme.

Austria’s run-off areas and kerbs caught out several other drivers. Turn nine was a particular source of problems. Romain Grosjean picked up a puncture after running hard over the exit kerb and Felipe Massa also pitted to have his car inspected after touching the same kerb.

It was an encouraging session for McLaren as both cars appeared in the top ten after running Honda’s new spec three power unit. Stoffel Vandoorne was the first of the two in seventh place.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’05.97538
233Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’06.1650.19023
377Valtteri BottasMercedes1’06.3450.37035
45Sebastian VettelFerrari1’06.4240.44928
53Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’06.6200.64532
67Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’06.8480.87324
72Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Honda1’07.2831.30831
826Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’07.4371.46231
914Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1’07.5101.53528
1031Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’07.5111.53639
1119Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’07.5501.57529
1220Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’07.5941.61930
1355Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’07.6331.65832
1430Jolyon PalmerRenault1’07.6491.67431
1518Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’08.0412.06635
168Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’08.0742.09920
1746Sergey SirotkinRenault1’08.5862.61127
1834Alfonso CelisForce India-Mercedes1’09.2803.30515
1994Pascal WehrleinSauber-Ferrari1’09.3233.34829
209Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’10.8534.87812

First practice visual gaps

Lewis Hamilton – 1’05.975

+0.190 Max Verstappen – 1’06.165

+0.370 Valtteri Bottas – 1’06.345

+0.449 Sebastian Vettel – 1’06.424

+0.645 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’06.620

+0.873 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’06.848

+1.308 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’07.283

+1.462 Daniil Kvyat – 1’07.437

+1.535 Fernando Alonso – 1’07.510

+1.536 Esteban Ocon – 1’07.511

+1.575 Felipe Massa – 1’07.550

+1.619 Kevin Magnussen – 1’07.594

+1.658 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’07.633

+1.674 Jolyon Palmer – 1’07.649

+2.066 Lance Stroll – 1’08.041

+2.099 Romain Grosjean – 1’08.074

+2.611 Sergey Sirotkin – 1’08.586

+3.305 Alfonso Celis – 1’09.280

+3.348 Pascal Wehrlein – 1’09.323

+4.878 Marcus Ericsson – 1’10.853

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

Fastest times by tyre

DriverTeamBest ultra-soft timeUltra-soft gapBest super-soft timeSuper-soft gapBest soft timeSoft gap
Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’06.526None1’05.975
Valtteri BottasMercedes1’06.8450.3191’06.3450.18None
Daniel RicciardoRed BullNone1’06.6200.4551’07.6991.724
Max VerstappenRed BullNone1’06.1651’07.3801.405
Sebastian VettelFerrariNone1’06.4240.259None
Kimi RaikkonenFerrariNone1’06.8480.683None
Alfonso CelisForce India1’09.2802.754NoneNone
Esteban OconForce India1’07.5110.985NoneNone
Felipe MassaWilliamsNone1’07.5501.3851’48.04942.074
Lance StrollWilliamsNone1’08.0411.876None
Fernando AlonsoMcLaren1’07.5100.984NoneNone
Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren1’07.2830.757NoneNone
Carlos Sainz JnrToro RossoNone1’07.6331.4681’08.8952.92
Daniil KvyatToro RossoNone1’07.4371.272None
Romain GrosjeanHaasNone1’08.0741.9093’58.096172.121
Kevin MagnussenHaasNone1’07.5941.4294’31.096205.121
Sergey SirotkinRenaultNone1’08.5862.4211’09.5533.578
Jolyon PalmerRenaultNone1’07.6491.484None
Marcus EricssonSauberNoneNone1’10.8534.878
Pascal WehrleinSauberNone1’09.3233.1581’09.8913.916

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Keith Collantine
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33 comments on “Hamilton breaks track record on hardest tyres in first session”

  1. I think Verstappen needs to take it more easy a bit instead of trashing his car left and right. Is Ferrari falling behind already ?..

    1. It’s a training. Finding the limit is part of that.

      1. This, the best drivers will be exploring limits all the way through to Q3. Hamilton and Vettel are the leading exponents of how to do this, building times through the weekend leading up to Q3 laps.

    2. Vettel also spun and damaged his car…

      1. sorry, no damage but did spin.

    3. He also went over four tenths faster than Ricciardo. Paid off, surely? You either never find the limit, or you occasionally go over it.

      1. And FP1 counts for what?

        Its all about data at this point. If both cars set their fastest lap on the same tyres, theres zero chance they are running the same fuel load.

    4. @noname FP1 (and FP2) is especially useful for finding the limit and you only know what the limit is when you go over it sometimes. Granted, it should be slightly over the limit, but these 2017 cars have the tendency to snap more as soon as the limit is reached due to the increased downforce compared to the last couple of years.

      I find it funny you pick out Verstappen right now when in Baku literally every driver except Alonso and Stroll (and maybe one or two others I didn’t notice) went off track at some point in all sessions including even qualifying.

  2. Ham was pretty relaxed about his 5th place and the dramas at Baku – I get the impression Merc have got a pace advantage over Ferrari now and he knows it. Merc will be spectacular at Silverstone.

    1. Seeing Hamilton’s performance in Baku- even with the damaged diffuser/floor where he was clobbered by Vettel and now the Austrian times (i know it’s only FP) I think there is some evidence of that.

    2. Yes, it’s so exciting to have Mercedes dominating the field like they have since 2014. It just wouldn’t be modern F1 otherwise.

      1. I can see your irony.

      2. I hope you’re right but you’re a bit premature – 8 races in Merc and have won half of them.

  3. I understand Force India has to sell FP sessions but Renault should be in a able to pay their bills alone get the most out of their time on track.

    1. Do Renault give seats because they need that money or because they don’t have a junior team and need to give some of the young guys exposure?

      But then again Palmer is still with them and he’s not particularly good so he most likely is still with them for the money he brings in.

      1. Surprised that Renault are giving up Hulks seat instead of Joylons in fp sessions. It’s almost like they don’t really care about maximising their chances on a race weekend.

        On a positive note, Joylon went a second faster than Sirotkin in this session. This will surely go down as the highlight of his F1 career.

    2. nelson piquet
      7th July 2017, 11:49

      i don’t understand this either

  4. Will this be the shortest ever single lap ever recorded (in terms of time) on any track? I can see qualifying times to be 1:03.5xx.

    1. Nope. In 1974 Dijon had lap times under one minute.

      1. @kaiie I hope we get to that some day. Watching cars racing at Lime Rock for instance is spectacular, the rhythm it imposes is tough on anyone racing hard, like a go-kart… you never rest.

  5. Mercedes are back on it since Monaco. I’m predicting a front row lock out for them tomorrow.

    Verstappen showing some impressive pace as well. He should be in for a battle with Seb for the podium.

  6. Merc need to tighten up and quit costing Lewis blown wins (Australia/Azerbaijan). It’s his time and he must capitalize. The FIA are bring bribed by Ferrari so nothing will be easy.

    Lewis needs to kick ass.

    1. If Lewis does start winning we can always bring Rosberg out of retirement to kick his ass back where it belongs :)

      1. As a Rosberg fan I love this statement XD

        1. @Juan Fanger @khanistanf1

          Actually I would love Rosberg to come out of retirement, so Lewis can continue kicking his ass, which as you know was the more usual situation.

          Nonetheless, enjoy you fantasy land…:)

          1. Some people can’t stomach that Nico Rosberg won and 44 lost

          2. @EagleMk1

            Not at all. Pretending that Nico was the equal of Lewis though is just ignorant and, frankly, embarrassing.

            But, he finished ahead of Lewis one time out of four. I accept that and congratulations to him. Lewis won 3/1, which seems to me a fair representation.

          3. Not at all. Pretending that Nico was the equal of Lewis though is just ignorant and, frankly, embarrassing.

            Of course, who pretends they were equal? Nico proved to be superior.. Yes, he won, in case you had not noticed.

          4. @EagleMk1

            Lewis vs Nico was 3/1 in favour of Lewis.

            Unless you started watching in 2016?

    2. Marian Gri (@)
      7th July 2017, 14:31

      If someone bribed FIA… it’s only Mercedes… to dump the V8s and run V6s Turbos. I don’t think there’s a simple coincidence the fact they’re so dominant since this type of power units are used.

      1. @corrado-dub, that theory does ignore the fact that all of the documentation which was leaked to the press showed that it was Renault that put forward the original technical proposal that resulted in the current regulation package.

        1. Of course. But we all know to whom it is most suited. And they can still say they did not ask for these rules.

  7. McLaren has found 1.5 to 2.1 seconds in new spec engine . Stoffel out performs Alonso for the first time and practice without an engine failure

Comments are closed.