Hamilton fastest in first Barcelona practice

Hamilton fastest in first Barcelona practice

9 May 2014 – Lewis Hamilton set the pace during first practice for the Spanish Grand Prix. The Mercedes driver, winner of the past three races, posted a 1:27.023 to lead McLaren's Jenson Button by 0.868 seconds. Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso ensured that the top four featured four different teams.

On a glorious Friday morning at the Barcelona venue, the Silver Arrows machines quickly rose to the front of the field, displaying the kind of pace advantage that saw the team dominate the opening four races.

The grip was broken by Button and Ricciardo for a brief phase, but Hamilton's late pace-setting effort ensured that it would be yet another session topped by the Brackley-based force.

It was not all plain sailing for the squad, however, with Rosberg suffering a suspected ERS cooling issue and being restricted to just nine laps throughout the 90 minutes of action. He ended the session in fifth position.

The session was worse for Sebastian Vettel, who hit trouble after just four laps. The reigning World Champion ground to a halt between Turns 5 and 6 at the 25-minute mark and ended the session back in 20th.

Kimi Räikkönen followed Rosberg in the second Ferrari, with Kevin Magnussen's McLaren in close company.

Pastor Maldonado placed his Lotus eighth, while Sergio Pérez and Felipe Massa completed the top ten.

Felipe Nasr and Giedo van der Garde ended their stand-in sessions for Williams and Sauber in 14th and 18th respectively, the latter doing well to avoid the barriers after a dramatic brake failure on the run to Turn 1.

Friday's second free practice session in Barcelona gets underway at 2pm local time (GMT +2)

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