The Phuket News Premier League predictions The Phuket News Kata Rocks The Phuket News
The Phuket News World Sport
The Phuket News Phuket | Thailand | World  | Surf Report  | Predictions XML, RSS, Feed
The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News

Mercedes leads the way in Australian practice

FORMULA ONE: Mercedes has started its fourth consecutive championship defence on the right foot, with reigning titleholder Lewis Hamilton topping Friday practice time sheets at the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.

Formula-One,


Michael Lamonato

Friday 23 March 2018, 03:03PM


Lewis Hamilton set the fastest time in both sessions, though his half-second advantage in first practice was slashed to 0.127 seconds by the evening. Photo: Mercedes AMG Petronas
Lewis Hamilton set the fastest time in both sessions, though his half-second advantage in first practice was slashed to 0.127 seconds by the evening. Photo: Mercedes AMG Petronas

The sun shone strongly on the Albert Park circuit in a dramatic departure from the snowy conditions during preseason testing, allowing all 10 teams an opportunity to push their 2018 packages ahead of the first race of the season.

Unsurprisingly it was reigning champion Hamilton who looked strong from early in the day. The Briton set the fastest time in both sessions, though his half-second advantage in first practice was slashed to 0.127 seconds by the evening.

Max Verstappen was the second-fastest man for Red Bull Racing, and Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate, Valtteri Bottas, was third, 0.228 seconds behind the leading silver car.

However, Hamilton’s fastest lap comprised an off-the-pace second sector, suggesting there could be around 0.2 seconds more on the table for him come qualifying tomorrow (Mar 24).

Though no prizes would have been awarded for picking Hamilton and Mercedes to top today’s (Mar 23) time sheets, positive was that the top three teams – the German marque, Ferrari and Red Bull Racing – appeared closer in performance than some preseason predictions had forecast.

Kimi Raikkonen, the fastest Ferrari driver of the second session, was only 0.283 seconds off the pace. The Finn led his teammate, Sebastian Vettel, by 0.25 seconds.

Race simulation times also suggested that the three fastest constructors could be closely matched in a dry grand prix, notwithstanding weather forecasts for rain throughout the rest of the weekend, potentially invalidating much of the practice work conducted today.

Haas’s Romain Grosjean set the sixth quickest time – albeit ahead of Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo, whose qualifying simulation lap was aborted by a red flag – only 0.717 seconds slower than Hamilton

It was an impressive performance from the American F1 team and early delivery on preseason testing pace that alluded to a big step forward in performance for the team’s third Formula One season.

World Cup League @ BISP

McLaren salvaged its day after enduring a frustrating start to its Australian Grand Prix in the first session, when it completed the fewest laps of any team after exhaust problems kept drivers Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne in their garages for 45 minutes.

In the afternoon, however, Alonso and Vandoorne could complete a respectable combined total of 62 laps, with the former securing the eighth-fastest time 1.269 seconds off the pace.

Renault drivers Carlos Sainz and Nico Hulkenberg sandwiched Force India’s Sergio Perez in places 10 to 12, the trio separated by less than 0.1 seconds.

Force India’s afternoon in particular was understated. The Silverstone-based team brought a significant upgrade to its car this weekend, and though practice times would appear to have pulled it into line with rival midfield team Renault, they also suggest the team has a significant gap to bridge to defend its fourth place in the constructors standings.

Williams and Toro Rosso followed, and for Toro Rosso the two sessions were positive proof that Honda had made major steps forward on the reliability front over the off-season.

Brendon Hartley and Pierre Gasly completed a problem-free 80 laps between them for the Italian team, though the Japanese engine remains down on power compared to its rivals, with both drivers lapping around two seconds slower than the leading cars.

Sauber brought up the rear, with both Marcus Ericsson and rookie Charles Leclerc 2.8 seconds off the pace.

Final practice for the Australian Grand Prix starts tomorrow at 10am (Thai time) ahead of qualifying at 1pm.

Don’t forget to tune in to Live89.5 each and every Saturday at 9am and 5pm for the Box of Neutrals radio show.

 

 

The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Comment on this story
* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.
Comments Here:

Comments Left: Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail: (No Hotmail, Live, MSN and Outlook accepted at this time)
Security:
   => Forget password?

Be the first to comment.

The Phuket News
The Phuket News The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Share this
The Phuket News
Have a news tip-off? Click here
The Phuket News
Related stories
The Phuket News
Phuket community

Recent Comments


Phuket Gov gives financial compensation to Songkran road death victim’s family

"worst off than during colonial times"Yep,ask the Hereros or Namaqua from Namibia,the first nations from America or any indigenous people fr...(Read More)


Cars parked at Phuket Airport scratched in the name of VIPs

No. Similar issues occur in any international airport and not confined solely to Thailand. The fools should not have parked in reserved spaces. Serves...(Read More)


Phuket fishing operators protest EU regulations

Well of course they do...just like any country has certain obligations to its citizens. That's what Parliaments do. However, it's the dictates...(Read More)


Gambling den bust nets 17 card punters

hypocrisy and stupidity from the government banning all private gambling and at the same time promoting it by the use of their lottery...(Read More)


Phuket Gov gives financial compensation to Songkran road death victim’s family

"Really? Worse off by whose standards? Yours", instead of complaining, about others opinion, why not prove an argument against their opinion...(Read More)


Phuket police arrest teen for violent mugging

Way to fight back and glad she is safe- why is she covered in blood some two hours later? Is there no comfort to be offered a victim? ...(Read More)


Phuket police arrest teen for violent mugging

After being trialed and convicted is there not a possibility to put such punks in a prison working regime? Something like daily cleaning road ditches...(Read More)


Cars parked at Phuket Airport scratched in the name of VIPs

Isn't Phuket International Airport a continuing drama? No security guards, parking passengers pay for parking around the clock!! CCTV not daily ...(Read More)


Phuket Gov gives financial compensation to Songkran road death victim’s family

"however it is obvious that in some countries in Africa and South East Asia people are worst off than during their countries colonial times"...(Read More)


Phuket fishing operators protest EU regulations

The EU has a right, and legal obligation, to look after its member states, same as Thailand looks after its own, whether you like it or not, no diffe...(Read More)

The Phuket News
The Phuket News
PHUKET NEWS
Phuket
Thailand
World
Business
Q A
Weird World
ARCHIVE
POLL
CURRENCY
WEATHER
PHUKET TIDE TABLE
The Phuket News PHUKET LIFE
Phuket Arts
Phuket Community
Phuket Culture
Phuket Dining
Phuket Education
Phuket Entertainment
Phuket Environment
Phuket Health
Phuket People
Phuket Technology
Phuket Travel
World Entertainment
Photo Galleries
The Phuket News PHUKET SPORT
Phuket
Thailand
World
SURF REPORT
PREDICTIONS
The Phuket News PHUKET CLASSIFIEDS
Phuket Buy and Sell
Phuket Jobs
Phuket Property
Phuket Cars and Boats
Phuket Community
Phuket Services
SEARCH CLASSIFIEDS
POST CLASSIFIED
The Phuket News The Phuket News PHUKET EVENTS
Phuket Event listings
Phuket Event calendar
Buy Tickets
POST EVENT
The Phuket News PHUKET DIRECTORY
Phuket Bars, pubs and clubs
Phuket Hotels and villas
Phuket Restaurants
Phuket Yellow Pages
POST LISTING
The Phuket News BARGAINS
The Phuket News ABOUT US
The Company
Distribution points
Subscribe
Advertise with us
Pay for advert
Contact us
CONTESTS
Content Google Map
Site map
Australian Visa Services
 
Currency - The Phuket News   Weather Report - The Phuket News   Surf Report - The Phuket News
LinkedIn - The Phuket News   Twitter - The Phuket News   YouTube - The Phuket News   Facebook - The Phuket News
Copyright © 2018 Class Act Media. All rights reserved. | Website usage terms and conditions | Privacy and Confidentiality Statement.