Lewis Hamilton has set the fastest time in the opening practice session for the Monaco Grand Prix, 3.2 seconds faster than the best time set in last year’s FP1 session. His teammate Nico Rosberg finished second ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
Both Mercedes drivers traded fastest times with each other early in the session as Hamilton outpaced Rosberg by a second on the ultra-soft tyre, which is being used for the first time this season.
It didn’t take long for the session’s first interruption when Williams’ Felipe Massa hit the wall at Saint Devote, bringing out the Virtual Safety Car. The Brazilian took too much speed into the right-hander and hit the side of his car heavily into the barrier.
Practice was restarted a short time later where Hamilton registered his best time of the session, a 1:15.537 which was three-tenths clear from Rosberg’s best effort. The German responded to end the session one-tenth of a second off his teammate.
The session was again suspended after Esteban Gutiérrez’s Haas stopped on track with a suspected power unit issue, which brought out another Virtual Safety Car.
Shortly after the session restarted, Jolyon Palmer ran into the barrier at Tabac and damaged his front suspension which brought out another disruption as the virtual safety car made another appearance.
Daniel Ricciardo then put in his best lap to finish the session fourth for Red Bull and 0.07 seconds ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix winner Max Verstappen, with the pair completing 29 and 30 laps respectively.
Daniil Kvyat placed his Toro Rosso in sixth position ahead of both Force India drivers of Nico Hülkenberg and Sergio Pérez, while Kimi Räikkönen and Carlos Sainz rounded out the top ten.
The session had a premature end with four minutes left to run, as Jenson Button ran over a loose drainage cover that was kicked up by Rosberg at Saint Devote. Button was left with nowhere to go but into the cover, damaging his front right tyre and wing.
The red flag was eventually brought out and the session wasn’t restarted.
|FORMULA 1 GRAND PRIX DE MONACO 2016 – FREE PRACTICE 1 RESULTS|
|Driver||Team / Entry||Result||Laps|
|1.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W07 Hybrid||1:15.537||31|
|2.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W07 Hybrid||+ 0.101||39|
|3.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H||+ 0.419||26|
|4.||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer RB12||+ 0.771||29|
|5.||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer RB12||+ 0.834||30|
|6.||Daniil Kvyat||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR11||+ 0.889||37|
|7.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM09||+ 1.023||34|
|8.||Sergio Pérez||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM09||+ 1.160||28|
|9.||Kimi Räikkönen||Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H||+ 1.375||24|
|10.||Carlos Sainz Jr||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR11||+ 1.593||39|
|11.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW38||+ 2.025||44|
|12.||Romain Grosjean||Haas F1 Ferrari VF-16||+ 2.062||33|
|13.||Fernando Alonso||McLaren-Honda MP4-31||+ 2.301||27|
|14.||Esteban Gutiérrez||Haas F1 Ferrari VF-16||+ 2.372||25|
|15.||Jenson Button||McLaren-Honda MP4-31||+ 2.383||26|
|16.||Felipe Nasr||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C35||+ 2.650||29|
|17.||Kevin Magnussen||Renault Sport F1 Team RS16||+ 2.737||34|
|18.||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C35||+ 2.764||33|
|19.||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW38||+ 3.209||10|
|20.||Jolyon Palmer||Renault Sport F1 Team RS16||+ 3.334||22|
|21.||Rio Haryanto||Manor Racing Mercedes MRT5||+ 4.991||28|
|22.||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor Racing Mercedes MRT5||+ 5.331||25|
Image via XPB Images