Daniel Ricciardo topped the timesheets in the first Free Practice session of the 2017 Singapore Grand Prix at the Marina Bay Circuit. The Australian edged Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull Racing teammate Max Verstappen as Mercedes trailed both teams.
The RB13s looked very quick from the onset, with Ricciardo and Verstappen swapping fastest times before Vettel managed to slot between the pair, 0.109 seconds off Ricciardo’s 1:42.489 while Hamilton lead the Mercedes in fourth, albeit four-tenths of a second adrift of Ricciardo.
Sergio Pérez managed to put his Force India in fifth, ahead of Valtteri Bottas who had a difficult session and was only sixth-fastest, unable to find pace in what he described an “undriveable” car.
Kimi Räikkönen was way off his team mate’s pace in seventh, just ahead of a mighty Fernando Alonso who put his McLaren Honda in eighth using the Ultra Softs. Alonso continued to light up the radio channels when his team asked if he wanted another run, the Spaniard responding “No. Please, no!”
Nico Hülkenberg’s early brake issues didn’t hold him up much longer, with the German netting ninth ahead of Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat who rounded out the top 10 and Stoffel Vandoorne who trailed his teammate by almost half a second.
Jolyon Palmer and Esteban Ocon also trailed their respective teammates as the pair took 12th and 13th ahead of Felipe Massa in the Williams.
Haas were the only team to set their quickest times on the Super Soft compound, with Romain Grosjean taking 15th, despite suffering a spin and reserve driver Antonio Giovinazzi 16th in the sister Haas, deputizing for Kevin Magnussen.
Lance Stroll’s session was marred with engine problems and the Canadian rookie was restricted to just 11 laps before crawling to the pits and spending the rest of the session watching mechanics work on his Williams.
Toro Rosso were another team to run a test driver in FP1 as Formula 2 racer Sean Gelael deputized for Carlos Sainz and eventually ran 3 seconds off Kvyat’s pace in the other Toro Rosso.
Sauber again brought up the rear with Marcus Ericsson taking 19th ahead of Pascal Wehrlein in 20th, both 5 seconds off Ricciardo’s pace.
Friday’s second Free Practice session begins at 20:30 local time (GMT +8).
Image via Red Bull Content Pool