Despite many rumours that the ban on FRIC suspension would hamper Mercedes’ performance, they showed no signs of slowing down as Nico Rosberg went fastest, 0.3 seconds ahead of Fernando Alonso in third.

Lewis Hamilton wasn’t far off team-mate Rosberg in second, just six-one-hundredths of a second split the two in the opening session of the weekend.

Susie Wolff replaced Valtteri Bottas in the Williams for her second consecutive FP1 session this year, however there were fears Susie Wolffthat just like in Silverstone she would only complete the one lap.

On her out lap, Wolff reported a gearbox problem as she was stuck in gear and the problem seemed to go from bad to worse when the oil pressure light came on her dash. Wolff was able to limp back to the garage where the team was able to quickly mend the gearbox, allowing her to continue on in her session.

Wolff silenced whatever critics she had left as she finished in 15th position, just 0.2 seconds off Felipe Massa in 11th.

Giedo van der Garde also made an appearance in FP1, replacing Esteban Gutiérrez in the Sauber.

Van der Garde completed 23 laps and placed 16th at the end of the session, only a couple of tenths behind Adrian Sutil in the other Sauber. Good signs for both Sauber and Van der Garde, as he’s been linked with a full-time drive with the team in 2015.

Both Red Bull and McLaren had a good session all placing in the top 10. Daniel Ricciardo was 0.4 seconds ahead of his team-mate Sebastian Vettel while Jenson Button finished 0.2 seconds in front of Kevin Magnussen.

Lotus look like they’re going to have another struggling weekend as the E22 looked incredibly unstable through the slow corners. Pastor Maldonado seemed to have to manhandle the wheel to turn into Turn Four, while Romain Grosjean encountered problems of a different kind when his rear wing became stuck as the DRS was activated.

Friday’s second practice session at Hockenheim gets underway at 2:00pm local time (GMT +1).

2014 German Formula 1 Grand Prix – Free Practice 1 Results:

Driver Team / Entry Time Gap Laps
1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W05 1:19.131 29
2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W05 1:19.196 + 0.065 25
3. Fernando Alonso Scuderia Ferrari F14T 1:19.423 + 0.292 21
4. Daniel Ricciardo Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB10 1:19.697 + 0.566 27
5. Jenson Button McLaren Mercedes MP4-29 1:19.833 + 0.702 24
6. Sebastian Vettel Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB10 1:20.097 + 0.966 28
7. Kevin Magnussen McLaren Mercedes MP4-29 1:20.105 + 0.974 32
8. Kimi Räikkönen Scuderia Ferrari F14T 1:20.210 + 1.079 21
9. Daniil Kvyat Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR9 1:20.337 + 1.206 28
10. Adrian Sutil Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C33 1:20.505 + 1.374 18
11. Felipe Massa Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW36 1:20.542 + 1.411 19
12. Jean-Éric Vergne Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR9 1:20.586 + 1.455 23
13. Nico Hulkenberg Force India Mercedes Mercedes VJM07 1:20.592 + 1.461 22
14. Sergio Pérez Force India Mercedes Mercedes VJM07 1:20.598 + 1.467 24
15. Susie Wolff Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW36 1:20.769 + 1.638 22
16. Giedo van der Garde nl Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C33 1:20.782 + 1.651 23
17. Romain Grosjean Lotus F1 Team Renault E22 1:21.603 + 2.472 20
18. Pastor Maldonado Lotus F1 Team Renault E22 1:21.854 + 2.273 30
19. Kamui Kobayashi jp Caterham F1 Team Renault CT05 1:22.572 + 3.441 31
20. Jules Bianchi Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03 1:22.982 + 3.851 24
21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham F1 Team Renault CT05 1:23.256 + 4.125 35
22. Max Chilton Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03 1:23.299 + 4.168 22

Images via Sutton Images and XPB Images

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Josh Kruse

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