Formula 1 returned for the first time this weekend since the Monaco Grand Prix, with the F1 circus heading to Montreal for the seventh race of 2017 in Canada. In the first practice session of the race weekend, drivers took to the track to begin to set up their cars for Sunday’s race and get up to speed around the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
Lewis Hamilton tops FP1 ahead of Canadian Grand Prix
The early stages of the session saw teams testing new parts on their cars with a number of teams adopting a low downforce aerodynamic package for the weekend. Red Bull Racing and McLaren were two teams who did this, with both constructors fitting aero rakes to Daniel Ricciardo and Stoffel Vandoorne‘s cars, allowing them to measure the airflow over the car and measure tyre wake in order to ensure that the fitted parts were effective, efficient, and that they worked.
The session saw a number of mistakes from different drivers, with Max Verstappen, Stoffel Vandoorne, and Jolyon Palmer regularly locking up out on track. The Ferrari pair also struggled in the early stages of the session, with Kimi Raikkonen and the current championship leader, Sebastian Vettel, spinning their machines in their first few laps of the session. Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Ocon also joined the pair, spinning at the start of sector 2.
Within five minutes of the pit lane going green, Carlos Sainz Jr quickly found himself out of the session for Toro Rosso, with the Spanish driver coming to a halt on the back straight in what looked to be an engine failure. Later in the session, Fernando Alonso also stopped out on track, with his McLaren-Honda breaking down. When asked about the issue, Alonso suggested that it could be a problem with the gearbox, stating that he was “used to it” due to the poor reliability of the McLaren. Nevertheless, Alonso believed that the reliability issue would not harm his weekend, and that he will be on the pace in qualifying and in Sunday’s race.
When the checkered flag waved at the end of the session, Lewis Hamilton was the early pace setter for Mercedes, setting a best lap of a 1:13.809, 0.198 seconds faster than Sebastian Vettel who led Valtteri Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen.
Force India were impressively fifth and sixth fastest, and will be looking to deliver greater performances than they did last time out in Monaco, with neither Esteban Ocon or Sergio Perez finishing inside the top ten.
Results from Practice 1 of the Canadian Grand Prix:
- Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1:13.809
- Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, 1:14.007
- Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, 1:14.046
- Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, 1:14.230
- Sergio Perez, Force India, 1:14.578
- Esteban Ocon, Force India, 1:14.785
- Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1:14.861
- Felipe Massa, Williams, 1:15.106
- Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing, 1:15.441
- Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1:15.658
- Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren, 1:15.942
- Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1, 1:16.233
- Lance Stroll, Williams, 1:16.313
- Romain Grosjean, Haas F1, 1:16.345
- Nico Hulkenberg, Renault, 1:16.473
- Fernando Alonso, McLaren, 1:16.521
- Marcus Ericsson, Sauber, 1:16.805
- Jolyon Palmer, Renault, 1:17.004
- Pascal Wehrlein, Sauber, 1:17.606
- Carlos Sainz Jr, Toro Rosso, No time