Hamilton fastest as title-deciding weekend begins

Hamilton fastest as title-deciding weekend begins

23 November 2012 – Lewis Hamilton set the pace in a warm and dry first practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix. Using a prototype Pirelli tyre ahead of the 2013 season, the McLaren driver led the way at Interlagos as title contenders Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso finished second and fifth for Red Bull and Ferrari, respectively.

This was not an ordinary Friday morning session. Not only does the championship hang in the balance for the blue and red teams, but the experimental tyre compound allowed all teams a chance to garner critical data for next year’s cars, as the next testing will not take place until February and just one month before the Australian Grand Prix.

It was an incident-free 90 minutes, with the exception of spins for Felipe Massa and Timo Glock. Hamilton, on the 2013 tyre which was indicated by orange markings, went quickest on his best effort of 1:14.131 - edging out Vettel by just nine thousandths of a second. 2009 and 2011 winner Mark Webber was third as Jenson Button and Alonso completed the top five; incidentally, the Spaniard was in no rush to start his session, as rubber was laid down on-track by the other drivers.

Although the São Paulo track is not ideally suited to testing - not least because of its anti-clockwise nature and height above sea level, which can mean engines lose up to 60 horsepower - Mercedes took full advantage of trialling new parts; Nico Rosberg remained on the new tyres for the majority of the session, with Michael Schumacher improving to 11th as the chequered flag flew. The team has abandoned its coandă exhaust solution for this weekend, at the end of which seven-time World Champion Schumacher will hang up his helmet for the second time after 306 Grand Prix starts.

HRT limited their running in a somewhat incognito fashion, as Pedro de la Rosa and Narain Karthikeyan each completed around half the laps to their rivals; when questioned by the GPUpdate.net, a spokesperson explained that this had been ‘the plan’. The same could not be said for Kimi Räikkönen and his lack of running, which is most likely to be have been because of a broken exhaust or the loss of a cylinder in the 2.4-litre, V8 Renault engine. The Finn spent two lengthy stints in the pits and managed a total of just 16 laps.


Second practice starts at 2pm local time (GMT -2) and can also be tracked through the interactive GPUpdate.net Live Report

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Saturday 1 October 2016

  2. Vettel hopes to fight for podium finish 12:27

    Vettel hopes to fight for podium finish

    Sebastian Vettel hopes that Ferrari will be able to challenge Red Bull for a podium finish during Sunday's Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  3. Verstappen pleased to slot behind Mercedes 12:09

    Verstappen pleased to slot behind Mercedes

    Red Bull's Max Verstappen expressed positivity after he was able to slot in behind Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg…

    F1
  4. Rosberg still 'very optimistic' for race 12:04

    Rosberg still 'very optimistic' for race

    Nico Rosberg is still "very optimistic" over his victory chances in Malaysia, despite being beaten to pole by team-mate Lewis…

    F1
  5. Hamilton 'could have been faster' in Q3 11:40

    Hamilton 'could have been faster' in Q3

    Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton has claimed that he "could have been faster" after comfortably taking pole position for the Malaysian…

    F1
  6. 11:05

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Qualifying results

    F1
  7. Hamilton storms to Malaysian GP pole 11:03

    Hamilton storms to Malaysian GP pole

    Lewis Hamilton dominated qualifying to claim pole position for the Malaysian Grand Prix, ahead of Mercedes team-mate and…

    F1
  8. 09:48

    Follow qualifying for the Malaysian GP!

    F1
  9. Formula 1 tightens double yellow flag rules 09:02

    Formula 1 tightens double yellow flag rules

    Formula 1 drivers have been told that they must now abandon any laps during free practice and qualifying sessions if…

    F1
  10. Vandoorne: Positive to race next to Alonso 08:42

    Vandoorne: Positive to race next to Alonso

    Stoffel Vandoorne reckons it is "positive" that he will be racing alongside Fernando Alonso at McLaren next season, due to the…

    F1
  11. 08:24

    Latest Formula 1 photos: Saturday at Sepang

    F1
  12. 08:05

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Full Practice 3 results

    F1
  13. Hamilton leads Verstappen in final practice 08:02

    Hamilton leads Verstappen in final practice

    Lewis Hamilton remained at the top of the timesheets during Saturday morning's final practice session for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  14. Alonso's penalty increases with new parts 07:18

    Alonso's penalty increases with new parts

    Fernando Alonso's grid penalty at the Malaysian Grand Prix has increased to 45 positions after McLaren-Honda elected to fit new…

    F1
  15. 06:52

    Follow final practice for the Malaysian GP!

    F1
  16. 05:58

    Latest GP2 photos: Saturday at Sepang

    GP2
  17. Giovinazzi wins race, Prema clinches title 05:54

    Giovinazzi wins race, Prema clinches title

    Antonio Giovinazzi wrestled back control of the GP2 Series title race with victory during a thrilling Feature Race at Sepang…

    GP2
  18. 04:18

    Latest GP3 photos: Saturday at Sepang

    GP3
  19. Albon wins after dramatic opening lap 04:16

    Albon wins after dramatic opening lap

    Alexander Albon claimed his fourth victory of the GP3 season for ART Grand Prix after a dramatic opening lap in the first race…

    GP3
  20. Video of the Day: Mercedes pit-stop challenge 03:06

    Video of the Day: Mercedes pit-stop challenge

    Watch as Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg become mechanics and take on the pit-stop challenge.

    F1
  21. Friday 30 September 2016

  22. Bryan Herta/Andretti renew partnership 19:05

    Bryan Herta/Andretti renew partnership

    Bryan Herta Autosport and Andretti Autosport have confirmed that they have extended their partnership into the 2017 IndyCar…

    Indy
  23. Hockenheim: No agreement for 2017 F1 race 17:58

    Hockenheim: No agreement for 2017 F1 race

    Officials at Hockenheim say there is currently no agreement in place for the circuit to host the German Grand Prix next year…

    F1
  24. 14:02

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  25. 13:30

    Latest Formula 1 photos: Friday at Sepang

    F1
  26. Palou excluded from GP3 qualifying 13:29

    Palou excluded from GP3 qualifying

    Campos driver Álex Palou has been excluded from the results of GP3 qualifying at Sepang after his car was found to be in breach…

    GP3
  27. Alonso boosted by McLaren improvements 13:15

    Alonso boosted by McLaren improvements

    Fernando Alonso was left boosted by McLaren's progress after an encouraging pair of practice sessions for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  28. Renault: Valve problem led to Magnussen fire 12:12

    Renault: Valve problem led to Magnussen fire

    Renault Technical Director Nick Chester has confirmed that a problem with the valve on a fuel breather pipe triggered Kevin…

    F1
  29. Force India 'very confident' Pérez will stay 10:53

    Force India 'very confident' Pérez will stay

    Force India Deputy Team Principal Bob Fernley has reiterated that the outfit is "very confident" over Sergio Pérez remaining…

    F1
  30. 10:36

    Latest GP3 photos: Friday at Sepang

    GP3
  31. Leclerc leads ART 1-2-3 in Sepang qualifying 10:35

    Leclerc leads ART 1-2-3 in Sepang qualifying

    Ferrari protégé Charles Leclerc extended his GP3 Series title advantage to 28 points after taking his fourth pole position of…

    GP3
  32. Verstappen optimistic over long run pace 09:50

    Verstappen optimistic over long run pace

    Max Verstappen feels that Red Bull is looking "very strong" on its long run pace after the first day of practice for the…

    F1
  33. 09:42

    Latest GP2 photos: Friday at Sepang

    GP2
  34. Gasly beats title rival Giovinazzi to pole 09:41

    Gasly beats title rival Giovinazzi to pole

    Pierre Gasly extended his GP2 Series advantage to 14 points after beating Prema team-mate and title rival Antonio Giovinazzi to…

    GP2
  35. Hamilton: First day a 'good building block' 09:28

    Hamilton: First day a 'good building block'

    Lewis Hamilton has called his first day of practice for the Malaysian Grand Prix a "good building block", after struggling in…

    F1
  36. Vettel urges Ferrari to take any chances 09:10

    Vettel urges Ferrari to take any chances

    Sebastian Vettel has urged Ferrari to take any opportunities that come its way over the final six races of the season, starting…

    F1
  37. 08:35

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Full Practice 2 results

    F1
  38. Hamilton moves ahead in second practice 08:33

    Hamilton moves ahead in second practice

    Lewis Hamilton moved to the top of the times during Friday afternoon's second free practice session for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  39. 06:51

    Follow second practice for the Malaysian GP!

    F1
  40. Renault hopes to run Magnussen in FP2 04:59

    Renault hopes to run Magnussen in FP2

    Renault is hopeful of fielding Kevin Magnussen during Friday afternoon's second practice session for the Malaysian Grand Prix…

    F1
  41. 04:36

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Full Practice 1 results

    F1
  42. Rosberg comfortably tops FP1 at Sepang 04:35

    Rosberg comfortably tops FP1 at Sepang

    Nico Rosberg comfortably topped the timesheets during Friday morning's opening free practice session for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
more news