F1: Fastest Max Verstappen in first practice before Grand Prix Abu Dhabi

Max Verstappen put a marker when he set the pace in the first practice before the title fight with Lewis Hamilton in Grand Prix Abu Dhabi.

The pair racked up 369.5 points to advance to the season-ending race at Yas Marina Circuit.

But it was Verstappen’s Red Bull who set an early record on the changed track, with a time of 1 minute 25,009 seconds to finish 0.346 seconds ahead of Hamilton, who was third behind Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas.

Changes around the Yas Marina lap saw Verstappen run 12 seconds faster than the fastest time in the respective session here last year.

Even when he complained about problems with his steering, Verstappen proved to be quick, although the session didn’t always show who had real speed during the race weekend.

Hamilton certainly pushed hard, ran wide and missed the top at the age of seven as he came close to 0.150 behind Bottas, the Finn race for Mercedes for the last time.

Fernando Alonso’s Alpine was sixth, sandwiched by Yuki Tsunoda and Pierre Gasly’s AlphaTauri pair.

Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari pair finished eighth and ninth respectively while Sebastian Vettel’s Aston Martin rounded out the top 10. F1: Fastest Max Verstappen in first practice before Grand Prix Abu Dhabi


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