Brazilian GP: Bottas beats Vettel to pole after Hamilton crashes
Valtteri Bottas narrowly claimed pole position for the Brazilian Grand Prix, as Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton crashed out in Q1.
Hamilton was one of the favourites for pole after leading Friday practice and trailing Mercedes F1 team-mate Bottas by just 0.003 seconds in FP3, but Hamilton crashed heavily at the high-speed Ferradura right-hander on his first flying lap in qualifying.
Hamilton lost the rear of the car suddenly mid-corner and slammed hard into the barriers rear first.
He apologised to his team on the radio before emerging unscathed, but took no further part in the session.
Hamilton’s first Q1 exit since the 2016 Belgian GP cleared the way for Bottas to battle the Ferraris single-handedly for pole.
Bottas was fastest in Q1, but trailed Sebastian Vettel in Q2 and after the first runs in Q3.
Vettel failed to improve on his final run in Q3, but Bottas found 0.120s to beat Vettel to top spot by just 0.038s, with a best lap of 1m08.322s.
The second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen was third quickest, just under two tenths slower than Vettel, while Max Verstappen’s Red Bull was the only other car to lap below 1m09s in fourth.
Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull was fifth, but he faces a 10-place grid penalty for an MGU-H change ahead of practice.
Sergio Perez’s Force India completed the top six, ahead of Fernando Alonso’s McLaren-Honda, the Renaults of Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz Jr, and the Williams of Felipe Massa, who almost crashed after gesticulating at Sainz in Q3.
Esteban Ocon failed to make Q3 for the first time since September’s Singapore Grand Prix, missing the cut by less than a tenth to Sainz.
Romain Grosjean broke into the 1m09s for the first time this weekend and briefly occupied a provisional Q3 spot, but fell to 12th as others improved at the end of Q2.
Stoffel Vandoorne’s McLaren-Honda and Grosjean’s Haas team-mate Kevin Magnussen ended up 13th and 14th, both paying the price for failing to break through the 1m10s barrier.
Toro Rosso’s Brendon Hartley was 15th, but he used Q2 to practice his start procedures rather than set a time, knowing he faces a 10-place grid penalty for an MGU-H change ahead of practice.
Hartley managed to drag himself narrowly into Q2 at the expense of Sauber’s Pascal Wehrlein and Toro Rosso team-mate Pierre Gasly, who all lapped in 1m10.6s in Q1.
Wehrlein was gutted to miss the cut by just 0.053s. Gasly, who faces a 25-place grid penalty for a brace of MGU-H changes, missed it by 0.061s.
Hamilton’s crash gave Williams extra time to finish preparing Lance Stroll’s car after changing its engine and gearbox ahead of the session, but Stroll could only manage the 18th quickest time, less than a tenth slower than Gasly.
Stroll will take a five-place grid penalty for that gearbox swap.
Marcus Ericsson was another tenth further back in the second Sauber, beating only Hamilton’s Mercedes, which failed to set a time.
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0.603s|
|5||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1.276s|
|10||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1.508s|
|15||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1.008s|
|18||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||–|
|19||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||2.364s|
Brazilian GP: Bottas pips Hamilton in a tight FP3 session
Valtteri Bottas set the pace in a tight Formula 1 final practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix as the top four were separated by just a fraction of a second.
The Mercedes driver clocked a 1m09.281s to finish just 0.003s clear of team-mate Lewis Hamilton at Interlagos.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was 0.045s off the pace in third, with team-mate Sebastian Vettel only a further 0.013s adrift in fourth.
Cool and overcast conditions greeted the teams on Saturday, with Ferrari focusing on the super-soft tyres and Mercedes the softs early on.
Raikkonen led the way initially, 0.040s ahead of Vettel, with Hamilton able to get within a couple of tenths.
When attention turned to qualifying-simulations, it was Raikkonen who went quickest, but he was soon deposed by Bottas, who inched ahead.
Back came Raikkonen with another improvement, only for Vettel to move ahead by just 0.060s.
Raikkonen shaved another few hundredths to reclaim top spot, only for Bottas to pip him in the closing stages.
Just 0.058s separated the top four drivers, with the fastest sectors split between Hamilton, Vettel and Bottas.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was the closest challenger, leaving it until the final few minutes to pump in the fifth fastest time, 0.963s off the pace.
Fernando Alonso was an impressive sixth for McLaren, with Force India’s Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon separated by a 0.035s in sixth and seventh.
Max Verstappen survived a late spin late on, having taken too much of the exit kerb at the final corner, to finish ninth. Carlos Sainz Jr completed the top 10.
Felipe Massa, racing on home soil in F1 for the final time, was 11th quickest, but his last quick lap was scuppered because of Verstappen’s spin.
His Williams team-mate Lance Stroll failed to complete a timed lap after stopping out on track early in the session, reporting a loss of power.
Stroll needs a new gearbox, which will mean a five-place grid penalty, and an engine change but he will avoid a penalty for the latter by re-using an old engine.
|1||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team||Mercedes||1m09.281s|
|2||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team||Mercedes||0.003s|
|3||Kimi Raikkonen||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||0.045s|
|4||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||0.058s|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing||Red Bull/Renault||0.963s|
|6||Fernando Alonso||McLaren Honda||McLaren/Honda||1.007s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India/Mercedes||1.041s|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India/Mercedes||1.076s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing||Red Bull/Renault||1.214s|
|10||Carlos Sainz||Renault Sport F1 Team||Renault||1.318s|
|11||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren Honda||McLaren/Honda||1.356s|
|12||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing||Williams/Mercedes||1.390s|
|13||Kevin Magnussen||Haas F1 Team||Haas/Ferrari||1.440s|
|14||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault Sport F1 Team||Renault||1.462s|
|15||Romain Grosjean||Haas F1 Team||Haas/Ferrari||1.481s|
|16||Pierre Gasly||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.700s|
|17||Brendon Hartley||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.804s|
|18||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber/Ferrari||1.845s|
|19||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber/Ferrari||2.199s|
|20||Lance Stroll||Williams Martini Racing||Williams/Mercedes||–|
Brazilian GP: Hamilton pips Bottas to top second practice
Lewis Hamilton pipped Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Valtteri Bottas to the fastest time in second practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix.
The four-time world champion clocked a 1m09.515s on the super-soft Pirelli tyres to finish 0.048 seconds clear of Bottas at Interlagos.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo offered the greatest threat to Mercedes, finishing 0.228s adrift in third with Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel a further tenth back.
Hamilton led the way early in the session with the Briton clocking a 1m09.742s on the soft tyres, a tenth clear of team-mate Bottas.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was third, 0.433s off the pace with Kimi Raikkonen three tenths further back in fourth.
Raikkonen was the first driver to fit the super-softs for his qualifying simulation, but could only improve to third while team-mate Vettel’s attempt was still a tenth off Hamilton’s leading time on the softs.
Bottas moved to the top of the times with his first lap on the super-softs with Hamilton backing out of his first low-fuel run when he made an error in the middle sector.
Next time around, Hamilton had a cleaner lap on the same set of super-softs and promptly went quickest, his lap time just a quarter of a second quicker than his best on the softs.
Verstappen was fifth quickest, just over a tenth slower than team-mate Ricciardo, with Raikkonen sixth and Force India’s Esteban Ocon seventh.
Felipe Massa was eighth quickest on home soil, with Nico Hulkenberg and Fernando Alonso completing the top 10.
Alonso’s session was disrupted when he was recalled to the pits so Honda could investigate a problem it detected on the engine.
The Spaniard was able to get back out on track and do a low-fuel run before turning his attention to gathering long-run data for Sunday’s race.
His McLaren team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne, who spun out of the Senna S before continuing, was 13th quickest, two tenths slower.
Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson had a frustrating session, losing his car at the fast downhill left-hander at Pinheirinho, skidding across the run-off and tapping the barriers.
He recovered to the pits but took no further part in the session, ending up 19th quickest, a tenth slower than team-mate Pascal Wehrlein.
Antonio Giovinazzi borrowed Kevin Magnussen’s Haas for FP2 and was 20th and last.
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.228s||37|
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0.371s||38|
|7||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||0.791s||49|
|12||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1.180s||43|
|16||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.907s||44|
|17||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||2.306s||54|
Brazilian GP practice: Lewis Hamilton fastest for Mercedes in FP1
Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton headed a comfortable Mercedes one-two in opening free practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Hamilton’s FP1-topping effort beat the Interlagos track record, surpassing the 1m09.822s by Ferrari’s Rubens Barrichello in qualifying in 2004.
Hamilton, who clinched the 2017 drivers’ title two weeks ago in Mexico, headed team-mate Valtteri Bottas by a tenth in the opening 90-minute session.
Red Bull’s Mexican GP winner Max Verstappen was the only driver to set a laptime in the first 10 minutes – but his initial benchmark was quickly surpassed by the soft-shod Mercedes of Bottas, the Finn ending his first run on a 1m10.102s laptime.
This kept him top until he emerged for a second run on the same set of softs, and as Hamilton moved to within 0.072s of the benchmark, Bottas improved to 1m09.941s.
But the newly-crowned champion’s next effort, arriving at around the half-hour mark, then broke the circuit lap record – and he subsequently improved twice more to end up at 1m09.445s.
As the session passed its halfway point, Bottas ventured out on super-softs and briefly took the top spot from Hamilton, only for his team-mate to respond immediately.
Hamilton’s 1m09.202s would be enough to keep him top until the chequered flag, with the Mercedes duo focusing on super-soft long runs later in the session.
Kimi Raikkonen led Ferrari’s efforts in third, half a second behind Hamilton and just 0.006s clear of fourth-placed Verstappen.
Daniel Ricciardo edged Sebastian Vettel for fifth, the German’s FP1 run punctuated by an early spin at the Turn 9 left-hander.
Williams driver Felipe Massa, who recently announced his retirement from F1 at the end of the season, was seventh on home soil, and the last driver to lap within a second of Hamilton.
Stoffel Vandoorne, finally in possession of McLaren’s upgraded front wing, outpaced team-mate Fernando Alonso, with the pair – in eighth and 10th – split by Force India’s Esteban Ocon.
Lance Stroll was half a second off Williams team-mate Massa in 11th, with the Canadian’s former F3 rival George Russell – replacing Sergio Perez at Force India in FP1 for his grand prix weekend debut – taking 12th, six tenths behind Ocon.
Haas duo Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen followed in 13th and 14th, with Antonio Giovinazzi – who was originally slated to contest FP1 in the Dane’s Haas car – having his outing delayed until FP2.
Nico Hulkenberg, who annoyed Hamilton with a forceful move down the inside of the Juncao left-hander, trailed Renault team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr in 16th, while Sauber’s FP1 stand-in Charles Leclerc headed team regular Marcus Ericsson in 17th.
Toro Rosso was bottom of the standings in both laptime and mileage, managing little in the way of meaningful running.
While Pierre Gasly ended up 4.8s adrift with five laps to his name, team-mate Brendon Hartley, celebrating his 28th birthday, suffered yet another failure and had to leave his heavily-smoking STR12 at the side of the track without getting a single timed lap.
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0.548s||31|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.626s||38|
|9||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1.252s||36|
|12||George Russell||Force India/Mercedes||1.845s||29|
|19||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||4.832s||5|
|20||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||–||2|
Q: Kimi, ten years on – we all remember it very, very well from that dramatic day when you won the World Championship here in Brazil, probably the widest smile you’ve had as a sportsman at least. Can you share some special memories of that day?
Kimi RÄIKKÖNEN: It’s a long time ago. Obviously it was a great day but it wasn’t just about the day, it was the whole year. Obviously it ended on that day but there were some great moments, some not very nice moments but in the end it worked out OK and I was very happy with it but – I don’t know – I haven’t really thought about it too much; obviously after that, yes, but not for a while because it doesn’t really change my life today, thinking about it. I don’t really try and make a big story out of it.
Q: This year, you’ve had a very good car and kept developing it very effectively so where does it go from here for Ferrari? You’ve talked a lot this season about a few fine details here and there which have been the things that have stopped you but tell us a bit about that, where the team goes forward next year and what your personal ambition is in 2018?
KR: Obviously I want to be fighting at the front every weekend, to be able to fight for the championship next year. I think we started pretty badly – we were not really where we should have been – a personal feeling on my side – we’re not really happy where the setup was and it took quite a long time to figure it out and then since then it’s been better but then we had too many DNFs for many different reasons but I think, as a team, we’ve come a long way from year to year and also from last year, made a good step, obviously not enough for what we want but as Ferrari we want to win both championships. But I think we had all the tools this year, we just need to tidy up things and not make mistakes nor have issues on any side, not from our side as drivers or from the team side. These are just small things which in the end played a big part this year, who won the championship and which way it went but I think we have all the people, we have the tools and we have a great car. There are still two races to go and even though the championships are done we try to do the same work we always do and try to win races and then, obviously, we start from zero next year so hopefully we will be up there.
Q: (Gustavo Faldon – ESPN Brasil) Kimi, Felipe Massa is retiring; you were his teammate for quite a while. What can you say about him? How was your relationship and do you feel like he helped you win your title ten years ago?
KR: He’s retiring again, so let’s see if it actually happens or we will see him in the first race next year. I always had a good relationship with him, great atmosphere when we were at Ferrari together. We won two championships for the team as teammates and I think it was a great time. Obviously it was very fast, very good but I wish him all the best if he ends up (not) racing in F1 anymore. We will see what comes in his life in the future.
Q: (Andrea Lopez – Motorlat.com) Kimi, there are only two races left this season; what is the summary you can make of your season this year?
KR: I think it’s very simple that we are in the championship, that’s how good or bad it’s been. That’s how it is this year and obviously we need to learn and make better things next year but we all start from zero next year and it depends on many things over the winter and over the testing at the beginning of the year. We will then get some idea of where we are going to be and then we see in the first races what will happen, but obviously the aim is to do better, to fight for wins and championships – that’s, as a team, what we want to do and as a driver I want to do that. This year, for sure, in many ways could have been better but I guess it can always be worse also.
Verstappen wins Mexican GP, Lewis Hamilton takes 2017 championship
Max Verstappen took victory in a dramatic Mexican Grand Prix as Lewis Hamilton survived a collision with Formula 1 title rival Sebastian Vettel to clinch his fourth world championship.
The Red Bull driver boldly passed pole-sitter Vettel into Turn 1 at the start, escaping contact with the Ferrari driver to continue and dominate the race at Mexico City.
But behind him, Vettel had suffered minor front wing damage, and Hamilton got ahead of the Ferrari through Turn 2. Vettel then tagged the right-rear tyre of Hamilton on the exit of Turn 3, further damaging his own wing and giving Hamilton a puncture.
That forced both drivers to limp back to the pits, leaving Verstappen clear to defeat the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas by 19.6 seconds to take his third F1 win.
Though Vettel recovered to fourth place to cut Hamilton’s championship lead to 56-points, there are only 50 remaining in the final two races, meaning Hamilton won the championship despite only battling back to ninth.
While Hamilton struggled to close back up to the pack, Vettel made quick progress through the field, climbing up to seventh before the race was neutralised by the virtual safety car when Brendon Hartley’s retired with an engine problem.
Race leader Verstappen took the opportunity to pit from the lead, with Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen, who had climbed up to third following early stops from Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez and Hulkenberg’s retirement with an engine issue.
The trio rejoined in the same positions, with Vettel and Hamilton also pitting for fresh rubber and taking ultra-softs and super-softs respectively with a little over half of the race to go.
The title rivals restarted their recovery drives, with Vettel passing Kevin Magnussen to take seventh, while Hamilton passed Romain Grosjean, Pascal Wehrlein, Pierre Gasly and Marcus Ericsson to run 12th.
Vettel lunged down the inside of Perez to take sixth at Turn 4 and made short work of Stroll into Turn 1 to snatch fifth, before setting off in pursuit of Ocon.
The Ferrari driver caught the Force India quickly and used DRS to blast past Ocon into Turn 1 for fourth, with team-mate Raikkonen a further 24 seconds up the road with 14 laps to go.
When he heard the size of the gap, Vettel replied "Mama mia, that’s a little bit too much" and he ultimately crossed the line fourth.
Hamilton, who came out on top in a brilliant tussle with Fernando Alonso late on to take ninth, joins Vettel and Alain Prost on four world titles, with only Michael Schumacher and Juan Manuel Fangio ahead on the all-time list with seven and five respectively.
Ocon equalled his best-ever F1 result with fifth, ahead of Stroll, Perez and Magnussen.
Daniel Ricciardo recovered from starting 16th – following grid penalties for engine component changes, to run seventh early on, but his race lasted just five laps as he suffered yet more problems with his Renault engine.
Marcus Ericsson spent the early part of the race just inside the points, but retired in the closing stages after reporting a brake-by-wire failure and retiring the car.
Renault suffered a double retirement, with Carlos Sainz Jr stopping late on after reporting his car was pulling on the straights.
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||71||1h36m26.552s|
|5||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||70||1 Lap|
|6||Lance Stroll||Williams/Mercedes||70||1 Lap|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||70||1 Lap|
|8||Kevin Magnussen||Haas/Ferrari||70||1 Lap|
|9||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||70||1 Lap|
|10||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||70||1 Lap|
|11||Felipe Massa||Williams/Mercedes||70||1 Lap|
|12||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren/Honda||70||1 Lap|
|13||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||70||1 Lap|
|14||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber/Ferrari||69||2 Laps|
|15||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||69||2 Laps|
|–||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||55||Power Unit|
|–||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||30||Power Unit|
|–||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||5||Retirement|
Sebastian Vettel beats Max Verstappen to Mexican GP F1 pole position
Sebastian Vettel claimed a dramatic pole position for the Mexican Grand Prix, knocking Red Bull driver Max Verstappen off top spot at the end.
Verstappen was quickest on the first runs in Q3 with a 1m16.574s, but lapped three-tenths slower on his final attempt.
This allowed Ferrari driver Vettel to snatch pole with a lap of 1m16.488s, having been just over a quarter-of-a-second slower on the first runs.
Lewis Hamilton was third fastest for Mercedes after a moment in the Turn 12 right-hander cost him time in the final sector, meaning he had to rely on his first-run time.
This put him ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who posted a lap good enough for fourth having had to abandon his first run without setting a time.
This was because of a lockup at Turn 13 after passing the slow Verstappen, who is being investigated by stewards for impeding.
Kimi Raikkonen was fifth ahead of Esteban Ocon, with Daniel Ricciardo failing to improve on his final lap and ending up seventh.
Renault duo Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz Jr were eighth and ninth ahead of Force India’s Sergio Perez.
Williams team-mates Felipe Massa and Lance Stroll were the only drivers among the five eliminated in Q2 to post a time.
Massa ended up 11th, missing out on a place in Q3 thanks to lapping 0.231s slower than Perez.
Stroll was over a second behind his team-mate in 12th, with much of the time lost with a scruffy run through the stadium section late in the lap.
Brendon Hartley, on his second F1 appearance for Toro Rosso, reached Q2 for the first time but ended up 13th thanks to stopping with a loss of power exiting Turn 3 on his first flying lap.
With Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne carrying grid penalties of 35 and 20 places respectively, McLaren opted not to mount a serious assault on Q2 with both drivers completing a token run without attempting a flying lap – leaving them 14th and 15th.
Sauber duo Marcus Ericsson and Pascal Wehrlein were fastest of those eliminated in Q1 in 16th and 17th place respectively.
Both did three runs in Q1, but Wehrlein was bumped into the dropzone by Vandoorne late on, moments before Ericsson jumped ahead of him.
Wehrlein did not improve on his final lap but still ended up ahead of Haas duo Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean, who also both squeezed three runs into Q1.
Toro Rosso driver Pierre Gasly did not run in qualifying on his return to Formula 1 action after engine problems struck in final practice.
The 21-year-old already carries at least a 15-place grid penalty thanks to power unit component changes made on Friday, and completed only 12 practice laps on his first appearance at Mexico City.
|2||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.574s||0.086s|
|6||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.437s||0.949s|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.447s||0.959s|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.807s||1.319s|
|13||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||–||–|
|20||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||–||–|
Mexican GP: Max Verstappen keeps Red Bull on top in practice three
Max Verstappen pipped Formula 1 championship leader Lewis Hamilton by a fraction of a second to set the pace in final practice for the Mexican Grand Prix.
Red Bull driver Verstappen clocked a 1m17.113s to finish just 0.075 seconds quicker than Mercedes rival Hamilton.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was third, ahead of Valtteri Bottas, with the top four separated by just 0.170s.
Hamilton set the early pace on the ultra-soft tyres at a cool and breezy Mexico City circuit before Bottas snuck ahead by a tenth, with a 1m17.963s.
Bottas than completed a series of fast laps, improving to a 1m17.537s to open up a four tenth gap over his team-mate before Hamilton reduced the deficit to three tenths.
The Red Bulls, running the super-softs, were best of the rest with Verstappen – who complained of struggling to get the front tyres to work – third and Ricciardo fourth.
When attention turned to qualifying-simulations, Bottas improved by a tenth of a second, but that was comfortably beaten by Vettel when the Ferrari bolted on a fresh set of ultra-softs.
Verstappen then snuck ahead on his low-fuel run by just 0.007s, having clocked the fastest first and second sectors.
Next time around, the Red Bull driver improved by a tenth of a second but there was more time to had after a big lock-up in the final sector.
Hamilton reported "power issues" on his first run, picking out Turn 7 as where he had the problem, and failing to improve on his earlier time.
He stayed out and improved by a fraction, but that was only good enough for sixth as Mercedes told him the issue had been spotted and was "just going to require a calibration change".
Third time around, the championship leader made big gains and slotted into second, just 0.075s adrift of Verstappen.
Ricciardo was fifth quickest, a quarter of a second off the pace, with Kimi Raikkonen sixth, three tenths slower than Ferrari team-mate Vettel.
Sergio Perez was best of the rest on home soil in seventh, nine tenths off the pace and one tenth clear of Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon.
Renault’s Carlos Sainz Jr and Nico Hulkenberg completed the top 10.
Brendon Hartley continued to impress with the 11th quickest time but there was frustration for Toro Rosso team-mate Pierre Gasly, who failed to set a time.
Gasly, who stepped aside for Sean Gelael in first practice and completed just 10 laps on Friday afternoon, stopped in the stadium session reporting engine issues early on.
The team gave him a complex set of instructions for how to restart the car, but when that failed, it signalled the end of his session.
McLaren’s Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne, who will take 20 and 35-place grid penalties respectively for engine component changes, were 16th and 19th respectively.
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.113s||–||20|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.361s||0.248s||10|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.040s||0.927s||20|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.165s||1.052s||18|
|11||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m18.602s||1.489s||23|
|20||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||–|
Mexico – A unique track makes for a unique challenge. At the end of a busy Friday, Scuderia Ferrari drivers gave their comments on the Mexican circuit and their runs with the SF70H, during which all three tyre compounds were tried out in both fast-lap and long-run configuration.
“It was a normal Friday, trying different things and solutions to use in the car,” said Kimi. “Because of the high altitude the track conditions were not easy, always feeling a bit slippery. In some places it was ok while in some others it was a bit more difficult. Obviously you always want to have an easier and more straightforward day, with a better feeling from the beginning, but it’s the normal story on Friday. It’s the first practice and we can improve. In the evening we’ll go through everything, figure out what’s best and get ready for tomorrow”.
Mexican GP FP2: Daniel Ricciardo fastest for Red Bull
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo set the pace in the second Formula 1 free practice session for the Mexican Grand Prix.
The Australian first hit the top of the timesheets early in the 90-minute session with his pace on soft Pirellis, shading team-mate Max Verstappen.
But with first Valtteri Bottas and then Lewis Hamilton switching to ultra-softs and going fastest shortly after the 30-minute mark, Ricciardo was shuffled down to third.
Ricciardo then took to the track on ultra-softs, posting a 1m17.801s lap to reclaim top spot.
Hamilton ended the session second with a lap 0.131s slower than Ricciardo having improved on his second serious flier on ultra-softs.
The Mercedes driver earlier spun at Turn 11, ending up in the runoff area of the quick left-hander, but did not sustain any damage.
His pace was enough to put him just ahead of Verstappen, who was just 0.032s slower. His running was subsequently cut short as a precaution thanks to high oil consumption.
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel’s session was briefly interrupted when his car’s fire extinguisher went off, sending him back to the pits for a change of overalls.
When he returned to the track, he suffered an off-track moment at Turn 11 before setting a time good enough for fourth fastest at the halfway mark.
Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen was fifth fastest having briefly held second place behind Hamilton when he set his time before being shuffled back down.
Bottas, who set the pace in the morning session, was sixth and half-a-second off Ricciardo having complained of having significantly less grip than before.
Fernando Alonso, who was briefly fastest early on, delayed his ultra-soft run until there were 35 minutes remaining to set the seventh fastest time.
That relegated Force India’s Sergio Perez to eighth ahead of Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Ocon, the latter having sat out the first session to allow Alfonso Celis Jr some running.
On his second grand prix appearance, Toro Rosso driver Brendon Hartley split the two Williams machines in 13th place.
Hartley later spun in the middle of the Turn 6 hairpin, but was able to continue.
McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne was 15th after missing most of the first session and then losing time early in the afternoon thanks to a loose wheel.
Pierre Gasly was 19th in the second Toro Rosso, having missed FP1 for Sean Gelael on his return to F1 after missing the United States Grand Prix. He was only able to complete 10 laps.
Romain Grosjean caused an early red flag when he spun exiting the final right-hander at Turn 17 just after the three-minute mark.
Although he kept the Haas-Ferrari out of the wall and rejoined, he then suffered a delamination of the left-rear tyre while on the main straight.
This led to bodywork damage and a nine-minute red flag while marshals cleared the debris from the track.
He did not return to the track, meaning he was 7.725s off the pace having only set one lap time early on.
|1||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.801s||26|
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0.163s||17|
|8||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||0.927s||41|
|10||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1.021s||42|
|13||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.622s||40|
|19||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Renault||3.944s||10|
Mexican GP FP1: Valtteri Bottas leads Lewis Hamilton in Mercedes 1-2
Valtteri Bottas beat Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Lewis Hamilton to the quickest time in the opening practice session for the Mexican Grand Prix.
Bottas clocked a 1m17.824s on the ultra-softs to finish 0.466s clear of Hamilton, with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen a further tenth adrift in third.
Bottas set the early pace on the super-softs, clocking a 1m19.614s, only to be deposed by Verstappen on the softs by half a tenth.
Hamilton moved to the top of the order briefly before Sebastian Vettel became the first driver to dip under 1m19s with a 1m18.824s on the super-softs.
Mercedes then turned its attention to the ultra-softs, with Bottas going quickest with a 1m17.824s and following that up with a second lap just 0.012s slower.
Hamilton was 0.789s off on his first run on the ultra-softs, losing time in the final sector.
Next time around, the championship leader had a slow middle sector, but closed the gap to just under half a second.
Ferrari and Red Bull opted not to run the ultra-soft tyres, saving them for the second session, and instead did their running on either the super-soft or soft.
Daniel Ricciardo was fourth quickest, 0.026s slower than Red Bull team-mate Verstappen, with Vettel the leading Ferrari in fifth.
Kimi Raikkonen was sixth, four tenths slower than Vettel, with Sergio Perez using the ultra-softs to end the session seventh in front of his home crowd.
There was frustration for the other Force India when Alfonso Celis Jr crashed at the final corner to bring out the red flag.
Celis, who was borrowing Esteban Ocon’s car for FP1, lost the rear on entry to the final corner and hit the wall on the outside, breaking the rear wing.
Fernando Alonso, who will take a 20-place grid penalty for Sunday’s race after engine component changes, was eighth with Felipe Massa and Nico Hulkenberg completing the top 10.
Kevin Magnussen spent most of the session in the garage after his Haas team discovered a water leak but got out in the closing minutes to clock the 13th fastest time.
Pascal Wehrlein, who has yet to secure a seat for next season, was 14th quickest, ahead of both Toro Rosso drivers and half a second ahead of team-mate Charles Leclerc, who was stepping in for Marcus Ericsson.
Brendon Hartley stopped out on track reporting an engine problem and though he managed to get his Toro Rosso going again to return to the pits, he didn’t complete any further running.
He was 18th fastest, a tenth adrift of Sean Gelael, who was standing in for Pierre Gasly for this session.
Stoffel Vandoorne failed to set a time after Honda detected a potential issue in his engine data.
It came after Honda completed a full engine change ahead of the session in a bid to have relatively fresh elements for the final two races of the season.
When Honda detected the problem during FP1, it decided to revert to an older specification from Vandoorne’s pool, which means no further penalty, while it investigates the issue.
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0.571s||16|
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.597s||28|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1.416s||21|
|17||Sean Gelael||Toro Rosso/Renault||3.815s||29|
|18||Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso/Renault||3.923s||10|
|19||Alfonso Celis||Force India/Mercedes||4.518s||17|