Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Spa-Francorchamps, 2019

Vettel leads Ferrari one-two as practice begins at Spa

2019 Belgian Grand Prix first practice

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Last year’s Belgian Grand Prix winner Sebastian Vettel led a one-two for Ferrari in the first practice session for this weekend’s race.

However Vettel’s best effort of 1’44.574, set on soft tyres, was two tenths of a second off the best time he managed in the same session last year. Team mate Charles Leclerc backed him up with a quickest time of 1’44.788.

The Red Bull pair were next, also on soft tyres, but the best part of a second slower than the SF90s. In his first outing for the team Alexander Albon lapped within a tenth of a second of Max Verstappen.

The Mercedes drivers spent the session on the medium compound tyres as they put the first laps on their new-specification power units. Hamilton had a disrupted session: He had to drive slowly back to the pits early on after a throttle problem, and went off at La Source later on.

Racing Point, who often perform well at Spa, looked in good shape. Lance Stroll set the seventh-fastest time despite his car spectacularly shedding part of its engine cover on the approach to Les Combes at one point.

Daniel Ricciardo’s Renault split the two RP19s. Carlos Sainz Jnr prevented the other Renault of Nico Hulkenberg from taking the final place in the top 10.

The Williams pair propped up the time sheets, with test driver Nicholas Latifi pipping regular driver Robert Kubica.

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Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
15Sebastian VettelFerrari1’44.57420
216Charles LeclercFerrari1’44.7880.21420
333Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’45.5070.93318
423Alexander AlbonRed Bull-Honda1’45.5841.01019
577Valtteri BottasMercedes1’45.8821.30825
644Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’45.9731.39916
718Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’46.1981.62416
83Daniel RicciardoRenault1’46.4261.85223
911Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’46.4331.85922
1055Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’46.5571.98320
1127Nico HulkenbergRenault1’46.6692.09523
124Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’46.6702.09619
137Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’47.0242.45020
148Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’47.1762.60218
1599Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’47.3332.75922
1620Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’47.4882.91421
1726Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Honda1’47.6363.06220
1810Pierre GaslyToro Rosso-Honda1’47.9683.39426
1940Nicholas LatifiWilliams-Mercedes1’48.7844.21024
2088Robert KubicaWilliams-Mercedes1’48.9664.39224

First practice visual gaps

Sebastian Vettel – 1’44.574

+0.214 Charles Leclerc – 1’44.788

+0.933 Max Verstappen – 1’45.507

+1.010 Alexander Albon – 1’45.584

+1.308 Valtteri Bottas – 1’45.882

+1.399 Lewis Hamilton – 1’45.973

+1.624 Lance Stroll – 1’46.198

+1.852 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’46.426

+1.859 Sergio Perez – 1’46.433

+1.983 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’46.557

+2.095 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’46.669

+2.096 Lando Norris – 1’46.670

+2.450 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’47.024

+2.602 Romain Grosjean – 1’47.176

+2.759 Antonio Giovinazzi – 1’47.333

+2.914 Kevin Magnussen – 1’47.488

+3.062 Daniil Kvyat – 1’47.636

+3.394 Pierre Gasly – 1’47.968

+4.210 Nicholas Latifi – 1’48.784

+4.392 Robert Kubica – 1’48.966

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

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2019 Belgian 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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17 comments on “Vettel leads Ferrari one-two as practice begins at Spa”

  1. So Kvyat and Albon are driving faster spec engines that VER and GAS correct?

    1. Looks like it…..which is odd considering one may be cautious of giving a newly promoted driver the updated engine. Especially when they have a higher chance of binning it in practice.

      Maybe their hand was forced with what engines Gasly had left.

      1. Max don’t want to start at the back at his home gp so monza he takes the new one. But this weekend they have the new fuel so they can compare the difference

      2. Its the home gp of Max. Also now you can test the engine on Albon so if there are issues they can fix it before they fit it into Max his car.

    2. Yes, those 2 drivers will get new, and better, engine specs this weekend, but normally they will be in on saterday and do the friday on 1 of the older specs. Not sure if this is the case this time though.

      1. This will make Gasly look worse in relation to Kvyat and Albon look better in relation to Verstappen. It also helps hammer home the narrative of why they are replacing Pierre.

      2. No, both are on spec 4 on Friday. Honda needs the data for the fine tuning. Like kvyats sudden power spike problem resulted in a spin.

  2. Gasly’s just seen his last hopes of getting back in the RB next year disappear into thin air!

  3. How did Mercedes and Red Bull’s times compare to last season in FP1? Are they also slower?

    1. Both mercs ran Medium compound tyres while everyone around used softs. Ferraris are still about .2-.3 sec faster than merc adjusting for difference from compound. If anything RBR cannot risk running mediums in Q2 as they risk falling out of top10 in that case.

      1. You really think RB is a second of Ferrari on the same tyres in Qualy? It’s only friday and RB (MV) is probably not even trying to set a serious time. Ferrari are FP1 champions again.

        1. Well no, not a second slower, but I don’t expect the RedBull’s to be withing 0.5 seconds off the pole or even on the first two starting rows unless Ferrari and Mercedes run into some sort of trouble. For the race? Who knows, especially if it rains.

  4. Far to early to make any kind of intelligent assessment but the Gasly / Albon situation just has to catch ones eye doesn’t it.

    1. georgeboole (@)
      30th August 2019, 13:20

      @nullapax it’s more than obvious Gasly is broken at the moment and Kvyat has been there before so he knows how to handle this.
      But Albon has the new spec and we don’t know if it works better or worse.
      We ll have to wait and see

  5. The visual gaps for FP1 look very strange…

  6. Just out of curiosity why are Ferrari not bringing a new engine for this race? I mean they brought the second engine change forward by about four races, just seems a bit odd

  7. Williams test driver Latifi faster than Kubica! Did Robert have a problem, or was he just that slow?

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