Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Singapore, 2018

Ricciardo leads Red Bull one-two as Leclerc crashes

2018 Singapore Grand Prix first practice

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Red Bull started the Singapore Grand Prix weekend strongly by heading the first practice session with both cars.

Daniel Ricciardo set a quickest lap of 1’39.711 on hyper-soft tyres. He lapped just two-tenths of a second slower than last year’s pole position time, on a track which has been shortened by two metres following a change at turn 16.

Team mate Max Verstappen was second-quickest after his first run on hyper-softs was impaired by Carlos Sainz Jnr in the final sector.

They relegated the Ferrari pair to third and fourth quickest. Sebastian Vettel was the quicker of the pair, getting within three-tenths of a second of Ricciardo on the same tyres.

The Mercedes pair, who have brought fewer sets of hyper-softs than any of their rivals this weekend, did not use the softest rubber available in first practice, which is usually run in hotter conditions than qualifying and the race. Lewis Hamilton ended up one-and-a-half seconds off Ricciardo on the harder soft rubber.

Nico Hulkenberg demonstrated the performance gain from the hyper-softs by knocking Hamilton back to sixth place. Carlos Sainz Jnr highlighted Renault’s potential with the seventh-fastest time ahead of Valtteri Bottas.

Future Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc was ninth-quickest but ended his session early after making heavy contact with the inside barrier as he crossed the Andersen bridge, wiping out his front-right suspension. Romain Grosjean completed the top 10.

Stoffel Vandoorne endured another miserable session, covering just 11 laps. He spent much of it in the garage while the team worked on his car, and had to return to the pits after rejoining the track late in the session.

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Pos. No. Driver Car Best lap Gap Laps
1 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-TAG Heuer 1’39.711 27
2 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull-TAG Heuer 1’39.912 0.201 27
3 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1’39.997 0.286 23
4 7 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1’40.486 0.775 21
5 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1’41.105 1.394 26
6 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’41.232 1.521 28
7 55 Carlos Sainz Jnr Renault 1’41.329 1.618 23
8 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1’41.429 1.718 28
9 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber-Ferrari 1’42.035 2.324 24
10 8 Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari 1’42.108 2.397 21
11 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1’42.408 2.697 23
12 11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1’42.412 2.701 25
13 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1’42.452 2.741 20
14 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren-Renault 1’42.630 2.919 23
15 31 Esteban Ocon Force India-Mercedes 1’43.177 3.466 25
16 10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso-Honda 1’43.240 3.529 25
17 28 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso-Honda 1’43.485 3.774 30
18 18 Lance Stroll Williams-Mercedes 1’43.849 4.138 30
19 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams-Mercedes 1’44.036 4.325 29
20 2 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren-Renault 1’45.160 5.449 11

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First practice visual gaps

Daniel Ricciardo – 1’39.711

+0.201 Max Verstappen – 1’39.912

+0.286 Sebastian Vettel – 1’39.997

+0.775 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’40.486

+1.394 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’41.105

+1.521 Lewis Hamilton – 1’41.232

+1.618 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’41.329

+1.718 Valtteri Bottas – 1’41.429

+2.324 Charles Leclerc – 1’42.035

+2.397 Romain Grosjean – 1’42.108

+2.697 Marcus Ericsson – 1’42.408

+2.701 Sergio Perez – 1’42.412

+2.741 Kevin Magnussen – 1’42.452

+2.919 Fernando Alonso – 1’42.630

+3.466 Esteban Ocon – 1’43.177

+3.529 Pierre Gasly – 1’43.240

+3.774 Brendon Hartley – 1’43.485

+4.138 Lance Stroll – 1’43.849

+4.325 Sergey Sirotkin – 1’44.036

+5.449 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’45.160

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

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2018 Singapore Grand Prix

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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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29 comments on “Ricciardo leads Red Bull one-two as Leclerc crashes”

  1. That table is in serious need to tyre details for the fastest lap. Neither of those two mercs used HS tyres and did their fastest laps on hardest tyre compound available. Also durability of that HS is going to be critical for early stint of race, lets wait for FP2 where Mercs might end up using those tyres for long runs.

    1. That table is in serious need to tyre details for the fastest lap

      Agree. It becomes impossible to understand the potential of the cars if there isn’t a reference for which tyre they were running.

      1. @Chaitanya @todfod Yes, but even having the tyre compounds informed wouldn’t really help here since we don’t know the fuel loads, or engine maps/modes, etc., anyway, which already reduce the comparability of the performance of the cars.

        1. @jerejj

          It’s still better to have one unknown as compared to two unknowns.

      2. This is a regular (and totally fair) complaint. I still don’t know why it doesn’t

    2. Absolutely right, you can get a false idea of the lap times if you don’t read the article.

    3. If the structure of the site can’t be easily modified, maybe @keithcollantine can just place a (SS) (HS) alongside the drivers’ names?

  2. Sad to see such difference in performance in both sides of McLaren garage. How will Vandoorne even perform if race after race there is problem with his car.

    1. Makes you wonder why Stoff didn’t decide lo leave by himself

    2. Wait, you can’t really say vandoorne is the only one with problems, can you? Alonso had a mechanical problem that didn’t even allow him to reach the max allowed in the pits early in monza, no one says he wouldn’t have had a problem in belgium and had many others this year.

      Let’s just say, mclaren is bad, both in performance and reliability.

  3. So, any Leclerc critics?

    1. No only if VER crashes ;)

      1. If he does the same thing in his 4th year at the circuit, in P3, while driving the fastest car of the weekend and in the process sabotages his qualifying and his chance to win the race sure I’ll come back and criticize him.

        As it is it was his very first session at this circuit, if he was ever going to crash that was the time to do.

        1. The only stupid avoidable crash indeed. But every contact activates a lot of frustrated critics here.
          Leclerc already had his share of stupid ccrashes btw.. this year.

    2. Well.. If it had happened in fp3 then there might have been a few. At the end of FP1 is like a get out of jail card.

      1. Also LeClerc is much less prone to crashing and more cautious and calculated driver compared to Verstappen who seems to somehow be the cause of a lot of crashes.

        1. You missed some races it seems ;)

        2. The cause of a lot of crashes? Maybe this year he had 3 or 4, but between 2015-2017 he only caused 2.

          And In bahrain Hamilton was partly to blame for the collision and in Baku Ricciardo was for 50% at fault.
          Claiming Max is prone to crash is a little exaggeration, he takes risks, but it is mostly others that cause the crash.

          Lets see how Leclerc handles himself when he has to fight Vettel/Kimi or Hamilton
          /Bottas in an inferior car.

  4. ”Daniel Ricciardo set a quickest lap of 1’39.711 on hyper-soft tyres. He lapped just two-tenths of a second slower than last year’s pole position time, on a track which has been shortened by two metres following a change at turn 16.”

    – Yes, but that’s entirely irrelevant, though, as two meters don’t make any difference whatsoever to the average lap speed, and thus, to the overall lap time nor even to the cornering speeds of the relevant corners (T16 and T17) in this case.

    1. The lenght of a circuit has everything to do with the average laptime!Laptimes are measured in ,001 sec.
      Even 2 meter has a noticeable result. let’s say they drive about 50 meter a second average. Do the math!

      1. @erikje I think the point jere was trying to get across is that those 2 metres don’t make a large enough difference for Ricciardo to not have been able to set a lap time that close to last year’s pole position time in Fp1 itself.

        Going by your own assumption, taking the average speed to be 50 m/s (or 180 km/h) through those 2 metres, the drivers only gain 0.04 seconds of lap time by shortening the track. As such, with those 2 metres, Ricci’s lap time would get increased to 1:39.751, which is still very close to last year’s pole time.

      2. Adub Smallblock
        14th September 2018, 14:18

        .04 seconds. Still significant, but obviously not in qualy trim, engine mode, probably fuel load.

      3. Depends on if the Alteration changes the profile of the corner relative to the cars orientation. You can suddenly shave off a few tenths in lap time, just like that.

  5. I feel a bit sad for Stoffel

    1. Yeah.. I would hope he’d at least have a decent run in his last few races. It’s just not his year.

      1. Ericsson has been performing like that since he got into F1, so you never know, we might have 3 more years of Stoff.

    2. Really gutted for him. McLaren should be ashamed.

      1. Shame is not in their vocabulary, at least not in Zak’s

  6. Didn’t Ricciardo crash in 2013 a week before he got announced at Red Bull for 2014?

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