Lewis Hamilton was fastest during first practice for this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix. The Mercedes driver was .23 of seconds faster than team-mate Nico Rosberg at a race he must beat him to keep his hopes of his fourth world title alive.
Hamilton looked to have control through-out leading Rosberg on both the tyre compounds. Mercedes also look to have the advantage in the final uphill section of the circuit
Red Bull once again looks to be the nearest challengers to the Mercedes with Max Verstappen third and within a second of Hamilton’s time. Verstappen’s time was a good effort because of the long flat-out final sector where you can gain the advantage from getting a tow up the hill.
However, conditions are expected to change later on this weekend with cooler and damp conditions which could bring Red Bull back into play, as the advantage Mercedes have on speed and pace closes. Daniel Ricciardo was fourth fastest.
Ferrari are yet to show there true pace yet and if the race turns out to be dry would be heading into the unknown as they only ran on the medium, which is ruffly .7 of a second slower than the soft. Sebastian Vettel was ninth after spinning at Mergulho on a new set of tyres and Kimi Raikkonen tenth.
Williams Valtteri Bottas was fifth fastest ahead of both the Force India’s of Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg, with Felipe Massa who is racing for the last time at home in eighth ahead of the Toro Rosso’s.
Carlos Sainz was ninth and Daniil Kvyat was tenth. However the Russian’s session was ended following a right rear puncher, meaning he sat out the last half hour of the session.
Jenson Button was thirteenth .04 seconds faster than McLaren team-mate Fernando Alonso. Both Haas and Renault ran test drivers with Charles Leclerc twenty first and Sergey Sirotkin twenty second. The Monegasque driver was eight tenths down on Grosjean.
However for the Russian it was a troubled morning, with the car running into technical problems.