May 10th, 2013 (F1Plus / Chris Cameron-Dow) - Ferrari's Fernando Alonso topped the times in the first practice session for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix. Felipe Massa was second behind his team-mate, and Jean-Eric Vergne was a surprising third for Toro Rosso.
The session started out wet due to a rain shower earlier in the morning. But as the cars spent more and more time on track, the surface began to dry, and the circuit was completely dry by the end of the session. All of the cars that set lap times in the wet used intermediate tyres, but eventually the track became too dry for wets, and a few drivers started to experiment with slick tyres.
The cross-over lap-time between dry and slick tyres appears to be around 1 minute 36 seconds. Felipe Massa managed to go as quickly as 1:34.899 on intermediates, but at that point Vergne was on track on slicks and going marginally quicker. In the closing stages of the session, when the track was properly dry, the lap times were more in line with expectations, and Alonso finished fastest on a 1:25.252.
The Spanish Grand Prix typically sees lots of updates, which were visible on the cars. Caterham have a new nose, Ferrari a new front wing and various other teams brought quite extensive updates. Unfortunately the wet track made it quite difficult to evaluate the success of the updates, which will make this afternoon's FP2 session all the more important.
Full results from FP1:
|5||15||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||1:26.212||0.960||24|
|10||14||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1:26.755||1.503||16|
|17||21||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham-Renault||1:28.600||3.348||19|
|19||1||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:29.457||4.205||11|
|20||2||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:29.473||4.221||21|
|22||5||Jenson Button||McLaren-Mercedes||No time||6|