Lewis Hamilton, wearing an unfamiliar silver helmet instead iof his regular yellow lid, was fastest in the first free practice session of the Singapore Grand Prix weekend at Marina Bay Circuit with the Red Bull pair up next.
Hamilton enjoys the confines of Marina Bay, not quite Monaco, but still tricky with the asphalt lined by walls. and his time of 1:47.055 – which he set on the hour mark of the 90 minute session – was almost a second up on the best time and was 1.2 seconds up his teammate Nico Rosberg, who topped the timing screens before Hamilton dislodged him from to spot. Rosberg was fourth fastest.
The ‘meat’ in the Silver Arrows sandwich were Red Bull’s Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel – second and third respectively.
Up next were the Lotus boys with Kimi Raikkonen fifth quickest and tad up on teammate Romain Grosjean with the sixth best time of the evening.
Ferrari have been besieged by media since they made their 2014 driver announcement public shortly after Monza. Track action probably provided them some much needed distraction.
Despite the massive pointsd gap in the title race, credit to the fighting talk from Fernando Alonso and the Maranello squad’s president Luca di Montezemolo. Early on in Singapore it is clear there is some catch up to do, but that has been the story of their year thus far.
Alonso was seventh fastest, 1.3 seconds down on Hamilton’ s best with Felipe Massa 12th, over a second down on his teammate. There was plenty of work going on as the reds sampled several updates and they should be closer to the sharp end by the end of the night.
Up next in, in eighth, was Sergio Perez who was quickest of the McLaren duo. teammate Jenson Button was 14th.
Jean Eric Vergne was ninth in the Toro Rosso, with Esteban Gutierrez rounding out the top ten in the Sauber.
No reserve drivers were in action on the night. (GP247)
Singapore Grand Prix, Practice 1 at Marina Bay Circuit – Friday, 20 September 2013
|2||2||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:47.420||0.365||20|
|3||1||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:47.885||0.830||19|
|15||14||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1:49.887||2.832||18|
|16||15||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||1:50.092||3.037||20|
|21||21||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham-Renault||1:52.920||5.865||24|