Practice 1: Red Bull fire early warning in Budapest
30 July, 2010
Jul.30 (Grand Prix 247) Formula 1 engines were switched off after the German Grand Prix in Hockenheim a mere five days ago. This morning they were roaring in anger in Budapest for round 12 of the Formula 1 World Championship, the Hungarian Grand Prix at Hungaroring.
It did not take very long for the Red Bull duo of Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel to reel off a succession of fastest laps. As a consequence the duo were top of the timing screens throughout the opening free practice session of the Hungarian GP weekend.
In the end Vettel was fastest from Webber second quickest, prompting Red Bull team principal Christian Horner to declare, “At Hockenheim Ferrari were at least as quick as us, maybe even a sniff quicker. Hockenheim suited them a little bit better than us, but their pace has been evident for a while, and I’m sure they’ll be quick around here – but I’m also sure the circuit will suit our car, and our drivers like driving here.”
Behind the Red Bull duo, over a full second off Vettel, was Renault’s Robert Kubica who ended the session third quickest. The top three Renault powered..
Fourth fastest was McLaren Mercedes’ reigning F1 World Champion Jenson Button who ended fourth fastest and best of the Merc powered brigade.
Fifth quickest was Rubens Barrichello (Williams) ahead of Pedro de la Rosa (Sauber).
Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, whose Ferrari team are expected to be the most likely challengers of Red Bull’s dominance, was seventh fastest on the circuit where he won his first Grand Prix back in 2003.
Next up, eight and ninth respectively, were Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher who have reportedly dropped recent upgrades. Basically taking a step or two back to move forward a bunch. Time will tell if this will be the solution for the Merecedes GP duo.
Nico Hulkenberg (Williams) was tenth quickest.
Force India mounted the team’s exhaust blown diffuser for Adrian Sutil to try out in back to back tests with Paul di Resta whose car was devoid of the team’s new upgrade. Sutil said, “We expect a few tenths out of it. We know it can make a very big difference if you use it properly but it’s the early stages of development.” Sutil ended the session 11th fastest.
Felipe Massa (Ferrari) was out of the top ten, setting the twelfth fastest lap time, as he returns to the circuit where he nearly lost his life in qualifying last year.
Also out of the top ten, clearly struggling with dubious upgrades, was championship points leader Lewis Hamilton who could only manage 18th quickest time.
After the first 90 minutes in Budapest it is quite clear that Red Bull have hit the ground running and the next session should see the pecking order of the weekend start emerging and show if Ferrari, McLaren, Mercedes or Renault have the muscle to challenge the fizzy drinks boys at Hungaroring.
Practice 1 Results – 30 July 2010
|6||22||Pedro de la Rosa||BMW Sauber-Ferrari||1:22.764||1.788||24|
|8||4||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes GP||1:22.777||1.801||25|
|9||3||Michael Schumacher||Mercedes GP||1:22.792||1.816||26|
|11||14||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||1:23.003||2.027||19|
|14||23||Kamui Kobayashi||BMW Sauber-Ferrari||1:23.327||2.351||23|
|15||15||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1:23.520||2.544||19|
|22||25||Lucas di Grassi||Virgin-Cosworth||1:26.686||5.710||17|