Brazilian GP: Albon goes quickest, then crashes in wet FP1

Red Bull driver Alex Albon set the fastest lap in opening practice for Formula 1’s Brazilian Grand Prix before crashing, while Lewis Hamilton failed to set a time.

Brazilian GP: Albon goes quickest, then crashes in wet FP1

Albon was quickest after the intermediate tyre runs but shunted with less than three minutes remaining while preparing for a late flying lap on slicks.

The session was not restarted, meaning Albon led the way from Valtteri Bottas and Sebastian Vettel – while world champion Hamilton failed to set a laptime.

Torrential rain hit Interlagos on Thursday evening and again on Friday morning, but conditions eased as the first 90-minute session began and by the end of FP1 drivers were able to complete a small amount of running on slick tyres.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was the first to brave a soaking wet track, using full wet tyres a couple of minutes into the session, but it would take another 20 minutes before a lap time was set.

Carlos Sainz posted a 1m22.149s that stood as the lone time for another 10 minutes, before Charles Leclerc went quickest on a 1m21.259s.

On his second run, after switching to intermediate tyres, Leclerc went four seconds faster and his 1m17.285s remained competitive even as conditions improved and others switched to intermediates.

Vettel displaced his Ferrari teammate with a 1m17.041s before Bottas set the first sub-1m7s lap, a 1m16.693s.

With 20 minutes remaining, Hamilton and both Red Bull drivers were among those still to set a lap time.

Albon then leapt from the foot of the times to P1, posting a 1m16.399s, while Verstappen waiting until just over five minutes were left before heading out for his first flying lap – on slick tyres.

Read Also:

The perils of the slippery surface were immediately evident, though, as Verstappen spun at Turn 2 shortly after Leclerc had run wide at the same place.

Daniil Kvyat had a harmless spin at Turn 1, but Albon was not as lucky as his colleagues.

The recently-confirmed Red Bull 2020 driver was completing his out-lap when he slid off the road approaching the penultimate corner.

Albon hit the barriers heavily with the front-right of his car taking the brunt of the impact, and the session was red-flagged and not restarted.

It meant no driver improved on slick tyres at the end, leaving Albon quickest from Bottas, Vettel, Leclerc, and Sainz.

Albon’s shunt also meant Romain Grosjean, Sergio Perez, Verstappen and Hamilton all failed to set a time.

Cla Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap
1 Thailand Alex Albon
Red Bull 9 1'16.142
2 Finland Valtteri Bottas
Mercedes 10 1'16.693 0.551
3 Germany Sebastian Vettel
Ferrari 13 1'17.041 0.899
4 Monaco Charles Leclerc
Ferrari 13 1'17.285 1.143
5 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr.
McLaren 16 1'17.786 1.644
6 Germany Nico Hulkenberg
Renault 8 1'17.899 1.757
7 Australia Daniel Ricciardo
Renault 9 1'17.985 1.843
8 France Pierre Gasly
Toro Rosso 17 1'18.100 1.958
9 Russian Federation Daniil Kvyat
Toro Rosso 16 1'18.274 2.132
10 United Kingdom Lando Norris
McLaren 15 1'18.559 2.417
11 United Kingdom George Russell
Williams 18 1'18.779 2.637
12 Denmark Kevin Magnussen
Haas 10 1'19.247 3.105
13 Canada Lance Stroll
Racing Point 6 1'19.414 3.272
14 Finland Kimi Raikkonen
Alfa Romeo 12 1'19.532 3.390
15 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi
Alfa Romeo 18 1'19.600 3.458
16 Canada Nicholas Latifi
Williams 16 1'20.010 3.868
17 France Romain Grosjean
Haas 3
18 Mexico Sergio Perez
Racing Point 1
19 Netherlands Max Verstappen
Red Bull 3
20 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton
Mercedes 3
shares
comments
Hamilton reveals latest Senna tribute helmet

Previous article

Hamilton reveals latest Senna tribute helmet

Next article

Albon not to blame for FP1 crash, says Horner

Albon not to blame for FP1 crash, says Horner
Load comments
The Mercedes lap that puts F1 victory fight back on a knife-edge Prime

The Mercedes lap that puts F1 victory fight back on a knife-edge

Red Bull led the way after the first two practice sessions for the 2021 French Grand Prix, but only just ahead of Mercedes. There was all the usual practice skulduggery complicating the performance picture, but one aspect seen at the world champion squad gave it a ‘surprise’ lift, as it looks to leave its street-circuit struggles firmly in the past.

How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working Prime

How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working

After its worst campaign in 40 years, the famous Italian team had to bounce back in 2021 – and it appears to be delivering. Although it concedes the pole positions in Monaco and Baku paint a somewhat misleading picture of its competitiveness, the team is heading into the 2022 rules revamp on much stronger footing to go for wins again

Formula 1
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again Prime

The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again

OPINION: An interloper squad got amongst the title contenders during Formula 1’s street-circuit mini-break, where Red Bull left with the points lead in both championships. But, as the campaign heads back to purpose-built venues once again, how the drivers of the two top teams compare in one crucial area will be a major factor in deciding which squad stays in or retakes the top spot

Formula 1
Jun 16, 2021
Why Alfa's boss is up to the task of securing a stronger F1 future Prime

Why Alfa's boss is up to the task of securing a stronger F1 future

Two tenth places in recent races have lifted Alfa Romeo to the head of Formula 1's 'Class C' battle in 2021, but longer-term the Swiss-based squad has far loftier ambitions. With the new 2022 rules set to level out the playing field, team boss Frederic Vasseur has good reason to be optimistic, as he explained to Motorsport.com in an exclusive interview

Formula 1
Jun 15, 2021
How Barnard's revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction Prime

How Barnard's revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction

The MP4/1 was pioneering by choice, but a McLaren by chance. STUART CODLING relates the tangled (carbon fibre) weaves which led to the creation of one of motor racing’s defining cars

Formula 1
Jun 15, 2021
Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool Prime

Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool

Wind tunnel work forms the bedrock of aerodynamic development in Formula 1. But as Pat Symonds explains, advances in virtual research are signalling the end of these expensive and complicated relics.

Formula 1
Jun 13, 2021
Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour Prime

Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour

The newspapers, naturally, lingered over Max Mosley’s tainted family history and niche sexual practices. But this is to trivialise the legacy of a big beast of motor racing politics. Stuart Codling weighs the life of a man whose work for safety on both road and track has saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but whose penchant for cruelty remains problematic and polarising.

Formula 1
Jun 12, 2021