F1 Grand Prix practice results: Verstappen fastest in Mexico City

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was fastest on the opening day of Mexico City Grand Prix practice at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez on Friday, the 18th round of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship.

F1 Grand Prix practice results: Verstappen fastest in Mexico City

Verstappen’s title rival Lewis Hamilton led a Mercedes 1-2 in Free Practice 1, but the Dutchman bounced back to top FP2 later in the afternoon – setting the quickest time of the day at 1m17.301s.

Mexico City Grand Prix FP1 results: Bottas fastest from Hamilton

Cla Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap Interval km/h
1 Finland Valtteri Bottas
Mercedes 28 1'18.341 197.781
2 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton
Mercedes 24 1'18.417 0.076 0.076 197.589
3 Netherlands Max Verstappen
Red Bull 28 1'18.464 0.123 0.047 197.471
4 Mexico Sergio Perez
Red Bull 20 1'18.610 0.269 0.146 197.104
5 France Pierre Gasly
AlphaTauri 23 1'18.985 0.644 0.375 196.168
6 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr.
Ferrari 26 1'19.463 1.122 0.478 194.988
7 Spain Fernando Alonso
Alpine 26 1'19.656 1.315 0.193 194.516
8 Monaco Charles Leclerc
Ferrari 20 1'19.667 1.326 0.011 194.489
9 France Esteban Ocon
Alpine 20 1'19.759 1.418 0.092 194.265
10 Germany Sebastian Vettel
Aston Martin 27 1'19.858 1.517 0.099 194.024
11 Japan Yuki Tsunoda
AlphaTauri 30 1'20.011 1.670 0.153 193.653
12 Finland Kimi Raikkonen
Alfa Romeo 26 1'20.026 1.685 0.015 193.617
13 Canada Lance Stroll
Aston Martin 27 1'20.030 1.689 0.004 193.607
14 Australia Daniel Ricciardo
McLaren 25 1'20.273 1.932 0.243 193.021
15 United Kingdom Lando Norris
McLaren 26 1'20.301 1.960 0.028 192.954
16 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi
Alfa Romeo 27 1'20.344 2.003 0.043 192.850
17 United Kingdom George Russell
Williams 23 1'20.517 2.176 0.173 192.436
18 Canada Nicholas Latifi
Williams 23 1'21.580 3.239 1.063 189.928
19 Germany Mick Schumacher
Haas 27 1'22.144 3.803 0.564 188.624
20 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin
Haas 24 1'22.819 4.478 0.675 187.087

What happened in Free Practice 1?

On a dirty and dusty track, Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Red Bull’s Sergio Perez suffered spins entering Turn 16 inside the opening 12 minutes, both hitting the wall and damaging their rear wings.

Hamilton set the initial pace on soft tyres at 1m20.0s, but then ran off track at Turn 1 and rejoined on the wrong side of the bollard, a tenth clear of Verstappen who stayed out for a long run on the hard-compound rubber. Verstappen then improved to 1m19.826s but Hamilton trumped it with 1m19.781s, quicker by 0.045s.

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Bottas took a new set of softs just after the halfway point, lowering the P1 time to 1m18.834s. Hamilton managed a 1m18.976s before Verstappen set the fastest lap so far at 1m18.464s, as Max ran softs for the first time.

Bottas worked down to 1m18.341s, the fastest time of the session that Hamilton got to within 0.076s of. Verstappen ended up third, 0.123s off the pace, ahead of Perez – who lost 20 minutes of the session while repairs were made.

Pierre Gasly was fourth for AlphaTauri, ahead of the Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, Fernando Alonso (Alpine) and Leclerc.

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

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Mexico City Grand Prix FP2 results: Verstappen fastest from Bottas

Cla Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap Interval km/h
1 Netherlands Max Verstappen
Red Bull 28 1'17.301 200.442
2 Finland Valtteri Bottas
Mercedes 31 1'17.725 0.424 0.424 199.348
3 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton
Mercedes 26 1'17.810 0.509 0.085 199.131
4 Mexico Sergio Perez
Red Bull 26 1'17.871 0.570 0.061 198.975
5 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr.
Ferrari 29 1'18.318 1.017 0.447 197.839
6 France Pierre Gasly
AlphaTauri 29 1'18.429 1.128 0.111 197.559
7 Monaco Charles Leclerc
Ferrari 28 1'18.605 1.304 0.176 197.117
8 Japan Yuki Tsunoda
AlphaTauri 31 1'18.644 1.343 0.039 197.019
9 Germany Sebastian Vettel
Aston Martin 32 1'18.681 1.380 0.037 196.926
10 Spain Fernando Alonso
Alpine 27 1'18.732 1.431 0.051 196.799
11 Finland Kimi Raikkonen
Alfa Romeo 25 1'18.841 1.540 0.109 196.527
12 United Kingdom Lando Norris
McLaren 27 1'18.979 1.678 0.138 196.183
13 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi
Alfa Romeo 31 1'19.227 1.926 0.248 195.569
14 France Esteban Ocon
Alpine 37 1'19.431 2.130 0.204 195.067
15 Australia Daniel Ricciardo
McLaren 7 1'19.521 2.220 0.090 194.846
16 Germany Mick Schumacher
Haas 30 1'19.620 2.319 0.099 194.604
17 Canada Lance Stroll
Aston Martin 36 1'19.730 2.429 0.110 194.335
18 Canada Nicholas Latifi
Williams 17 1'20.820 3.519 1.090 191.714
19 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin
Haas 28 1'21.581 4.280 0.761 189.926
20 United Kingdom George Russell
Williams 2

What happened in Free Practice 2?

In FP2, Verstappen set the initial pace at 1m18.818s on the medium-compound tyres and then produced a 1m18.206s, the fastest lap of the weekend so far. He subsequently dipped below the 1m18s bracket with a 1m17.920s.

His title rival Hamilton, running on hards, got mired in traffic and then had his best laptime deleted before locking up at Turn 1 and ruining his tyres. He was 5s off the pace after the first run.

Bottas was the first frontrunner on softs in this session, and took P2, 0.112s down on Verstappen’s medium time.

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Hamilton then set a new benchmark on softs at 1m17.810, but Verstappen blew that away with 1m17.301s, 0.509s quicker as he too took the red-sidewalled tyres. Perez went P3 on 1m17.871s, 0.61s off Hamilton, before Bottas improved to take P2 at 1m17.725s on used softs, still 0.424s off Verstappen.

At the end of the hour, the order was Verstappen, Bottas, Hamilton and Perez. Sainz was best of the rest this time, just over a second off the pace, ahead of Gasly and Leclerc.

Williams’s George Russell suffered a gearbox issue and didn’t set a laptime, while Daniel Ricciardo also suffered a transmission issue on his McLaren. Nicholas Latifi overshot Turn 16 in his Williams. and continued.

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