Max third in Imola FP1
Published on 16 April 2021 by Stefan Meens
Max Verstappen clocked the third quickest time in the opening session of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola. Valtteri Bottas was quickest around the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, with Mercedes team mate Lewis Hamilton in second.
At the start of the first free practice session, it is dry with a relatively cool ambient temperature of eleven degrees, with track surface temps doubling at 22 degrees.
The first driver out on track is Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi, quickly followed by most other drivers.
Five minutes into the session, the first yellow flags are waved; Nikita Mazepin has spun and has parked his Haas in the gravel traps. Luckily for the Russian, he is able to get out the gravel and drive back to the pits. A few minutes later, it is fellow rookie Yuki Tsunoda who has a small excursion through the gravel. Like his Russian colleague, the Japanese Alpha Tauri driver is able to resume his running unaided.
Meanwhile, Max has come out on track to clock his first timed laps. The Dutchman is sporting the hard Pirellis compound to set the third quickest time. By the halfway mark, the Red Bull Racing ace has dropped to fourth.
In the second half of the session, Max continues to be in the top four, occasionally topping the charts, before both Mercedes pip him to P1 in the dying seconds of the session. The front runners all use the soft tyres to complete their best efforts.
The final half an hour also saw two red flags. First, Esteban Ocon (Alpine) and Sergio Perez (Red Bull Racing) appear to have had contact on track resulting in both cars having damage. The Mexican’s RB16B has left rear damage with the Frenchman’s Alpine nursing issues at the right front.
The second red flag is right at the end of FP1 when Mazepin spins once again, this time hitting a wall at the pit entrance, signalling the end of the Friday morning session.
|3||Max Verstappen||VER||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:16.622||+0.058s||21|
|5||Pierre Gasly||GAS||AlphaTauri Honda||1:16.888||+0.324s||21|
|7||Fernando Alonso||ALO||Alpine Renault||1:17.457||+0.893s||23|
|8||Lance Stroll||STR||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:17.489||+0.925s||19|
|9||Nicholas Latifi||LAT||Williams Mercedes||1:17.739||+1.175s||24|
|10||Daniel Ricciardo||RIC||McLaren Mercedes||1:17.769||+1.205s||23|
|11||George Russell||RUS||Williams Mercedes||1:17.866||+1.302s||25|
|12||Kimi Räikkönen||RAI||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:17.883||+1.319s||16|
|13||Lando Norris||NOR||McLaren Mercedes||1:17.935||+1.371s||16|
|14||Sebastian Vettel||VET||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:17.984||+1.420s||23|
|15||Antonio Giovinazzi||GIO||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:18.058||+1.494s||24|
|16||Sergio Perez||PER||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:18.228||+1.664s||15|
|17||Esteban Ocon||OCO||Alpine Renault||1:18.360||+1.796s||20|
|18||Nikita Mazepin||MAZ||Haas Ferrari||1:18.823||+2.259s||22|
|19||Mick Schumacher||SCH||Haas Ferrari||1:19.480||+2.916s||18|
|20||Yuki Tsunoda||TSU||AlphaTauri Honda||1:19.781||+3.217s||11|