Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, Spa-Francorchamps, 2020

Bottas quickest before puncture as three drivers fail to set times

2020 Belgian Grand Prix first practice

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Valtteri Bottas narrowly led the first practice session for the Belgian Grand Prix by less than a tenth of a second from two other drivers.

Bottas’s team mate Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull rival Max Verstappen ended the session fractionally slower than the pace setter.

However there was concern for Mercedes at the end of the session when Bottas suffered a front-left puncture. He lost a likely second place finish at Silverstone four weeks ago due to a late tyre failure in the race.

“I’m getting used to these punctures,” he said on the radio. “I had one last week with my road car as well.”

While three drivers were tight at the top of the times sheets, three others failed to set a time at all. These included the Haas pair, both of which are having engine changes on their cars, and fellow Ferrari engine user Antonio Giovinazzi.

The quickest Ferrari-powered car was Kimi Raikkonen’s Alfa Romeo in 13th, followed by the two factory cars. He followed the two AlphaTauris including Pierre Gasly, who was frustrated at being held up by Lando Norris at one stage.

Alexander Albon ended the first practice session just under half a second shy of his team mate. The two Red Bulls were separated by the Racing Point pair, Sergio Perez two-tenths ahead of Lance Stroll.

The four Renault-powered cars completed the top 10, headed by Esteban Ocon, who has taken a new power unit this weekend. Carlos Sainz Jnr was the quickest of the two McLaren drivers.

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2020 Belgian Grand Prix First Practice classification

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
177Valtteri BottasMercedes1’44.49318
244Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’44.5620.06917
333Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’44.5740.08120
411Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’44.6290.13622
518Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’44.8680.37522
623Alexander AlbonRed Bull-Honda1’45.0490.55622
731Esteban OconRenault1’45.0990.60620
855Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’45.2220.72924
93Daniel RicciardoRenault1’45.2250.73221
104Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’45.2740.78128
1126Daniil KvyatAlphaTauri-Honda1’45.4470.95425
1210Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Honda1’45.5031.01017
137Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’45.7041.21119
1416Charles LeclercFerrari1’45.7591.26618
155Sebastian VettelFerrari1’46.1791.68615
166Nicholas LatifiWilliams-Mercedes1’46.4881.99519
1763George RussellWilliams-Mercedes1’46.5702.07721
1820Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1
198Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari2
2099Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari2

First practice visual gaps

Valtteri Bottas – 1’44.493

+0.069 Lewis Hamilton – 1’44.562

+0.081 Max Verstappen – 1’44.574

+0.136 Sergio Perez – 1’44.629

+0.375 Lance Stroll – 1’44.868

+0.556 Alexander Albon – 1’45.049

+0.606 Esteban Ocon – 1’45.099

+0.729 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’45.222

+0.732 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’45.225

+0.781 Lando Norris – 1’45.274

+0.954 Daniil Kvyat – 1’45.447

+1.010 Pierre Gasly – 1’45.503

+1.211 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’45.704

+1.266 Charles Leclerc – 1’45.759

+1.686 Sebastian Vettel – 1’46.179

+1.995 Nicholas Latifi – 1’46.488

+2.077 George Russell – 1’46.570

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

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2020 Belgian 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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7 comments on “Bottas quickest before puncture as three drivers fail to set times”

  1. Kimi ahead of both Ferraris. In the Ferrari powered jalopy that is the current Sauber…….

  2. Yeah, Kimi is a bit of whiz around this track though!

  3. I know it’s only FP1, but I’m beginning to think Ferrari can’t wait for this season to be over.

    1. They wont be able to catch up in 2021 either.

    2. Or the next either.

      1. Probably more of a question of catch who next year, Racing Point? Mercedes are over the horizon from where Ferrari are now.

  4. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
    28th August 2020, 13:16

    Ferrari with the williams pair next up…..

Comments are closed.