A bit of a turn up for the books in the opening free practice session for the Turkish Friday Practice - Lewis HamiltonGrand Prix, with Lewis Hamilton heading a McLaren 1-2, with a fastest time over a second clear of the nearest non-McLaren driver, Mercedes GP’s Michael Schumacher.

Nico Rosberg’s fourth place in the standings meant Mercedes engine power locked out the top-four positions on the timesheets, and actually took six of the top-twelve position all up, with Adrian Sutil 10th and Vitantonio Liuzzi 12th-quickest in the sister Force India.

However, Sutil was to blot his copybook with a heavy shunt at the fearsom Turn 8 in the final three minutes of the first 90-minute session of the weekend.

A warm, sunny morning greeted all 24 drivers, with ambient temperatures in the mid- to high-20s, and track temperatures soaring to the low 40-degree range.

Teams were certainly keen to clock up some mileage on the host of technical updates they brought to the circuit this weekend, and the two Lotus drivers were out on the track early to assess the revised rear wing brought to Turkey. Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli wound up quickest of the three rookie teams’ drivers at the end of the session.

The Red Bull and Force India teams were also debuting their maiden iterations of the ‘F-duct’ concept, although only Mark Webber’s RB6 was fitted with the device out of the two Red Bull drivers. That the ‘F-duct’-less Sebastian Vettel – who, incidentally, celebrates his 50th Grand Prix this weekend – lapped 0.2s quicker at the end of the session could be telling…

HRT elected to allow Sakon Yamamoto to have his first outing in the F110 as the team’s second Friday test driver, and unsurprisingly lapped slowest of the 24 runners, not helped in the least by a loose gurney flap on his rear wing.

Fellow HRT runner Karun Chandhok should be well pleased with his FP1 efforts, posting a fastest lap time that was quicker than both Virgin Racing cars – this despite losing previous track time when he had to pit mid-session with a suspected electrical glitch.

Friday Practice - Adrian Sutil Accident It was a generally quiet session with a few drivers running wide and bring more dust on the circuit, but Adrian Sutil’s heavy shunt livened things up when he lost control in the daunting Turn 8 and nosed into the tyre barriers, ripping off both front wheels and the front wing in the process. The reason for the accident has not yet been explained.

2010 Turkish Grand Prix Practice 1 Session Times:

  Driver   Team Time Laps
1. Lewis Hamilton GBR McLaren Mercedes 1:28.653 20
2. Jenson Button GBR McLaren Mercedes + 0.962 20
3. Michael Schumacher DEU Mercedes GP + 1.097 24
4. Nico Rosberg DEU Mercedes GP + 1.202 24
5. Sebastian Vettel DEU Red Bull Renault + 1.214 30
6. Robert Kubica POL Renault + 1.408 23
7. Vitaly Petrov RUS Renault + 1.412 24
8. Mark Webber AU Red Bull Renault + 1.444 26
9. Fernando Alonso ESP Ferrari + 1.641 20
10. Adrian Sutil DEU Force India Mercedes + 1.848 17
11. Kamui Kobayashi JPN Sauber Ferrari + 1.962 20
12. Vitantonio Liuzzi ITA Force India Mercedes + 2.200 21
13. Felipe Massa BRA Ferrari + 2.214 21
14. Sébastien Buemi SUI Toro Rosso Ferrari + 2.358 23
15. Pedro de la Rosa ESP Sauber Ferrari + 2.585 17
16. Nico Hülkenberg DEU Williams Cosworth + 2.702 23
17. Rubens Barrichello BRA Williams Cosworth + 2.811 19
18. Jaime Alguersuari ESP Toro Rosso Ferrari + 3.082 27
19. Heikki Kovalainen Lotus Cosworth + 3.508 24
20. Jarno Trulli ITA Lotus Cosworth + 4.337 22
21. Karun Chandhok IND HRT Cosworth + 6.223 13
22. Lucas di Grassi BRA Virgin Racing Cosworth + 6.484 21
23. Timo Glock DEU Virgin Racing Cosworth + 6.930 15
24. Sakon Yamamoto JPN HRT Cosworth + 7.484 26

[Original images via AUTOSPORT and GP Update]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.