Prac One: McLaren in a league of their own

Friday 27-July-2012 10:35

McLaren dominated Friday's first practice in Hungary as Lewis Hamilton edged Jenson Button by a tenth of a second.

Having introduced several major upgrades last time out in Germany, McLaren were confident that they had taken a step forward and that was evident at the Hungaroring on Friday.

Hamilton set the pace with a 1:22.821 while Button was second, 0.101s adrift.

However, more notable was the gap to third, which put Hamilton over half a second up on Championship leader Fernando Alonso.

It was a slow start to the FP1 as Felipe Massa tested various front wings and Kimi Raikkonen gave the new Lotus double DRS system another run. However, it wasn't until Heikki Kovalainen that the first lap time of the morning was clocked - a 1:29.977.

Raikkonen joined his compatriot out on track with Lotus' Finnish driver lowering the benchmark to a 1:25.117. Half an hour in only four drivers, Raikkonen, Jean-Eric Vergne, Kovalainen and Mark Webber had set times.

Soon after more drivers ventured out with Button taking the P1 slot with a 1:24.137 but that was quickly beaten by Lewis Hamilton's 1:23.941. Michael Schumacher joined that tussle, taking third and then second only to lose out to Button while Hamilton upped his pace to a 1:22.821.

Halfway through the session the top ten were Hamilton, Button, Schumacher, Nico Rosberg, Webber, Valtteri Bottas, Raikkonen, Pastor Maldonado, Daniel Ricciardo and Vergne. The two Ferrari drivers, Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa, had yet to make their mark.

Out on track, Alonso quickly moved up to fourth place but was still over a second behind the leading McLarens. The Spaniard slowly but surely upped his pace, moving up to third place, 0.6s down.

Behind the leading trio, Rosberg was fourth with ten minutes to go ahead of Schumacher, Massa, Bottas and Perez. As the drivers pushed hard in the final ten minutes the list of those running wide at Turn Four climbed rapidly with Kamui Kobayashi, Rosberg, Maldonado and Schumacher all taking to the run-off.

Practice One ended with Hamilton 0.101s on Button with Alonso half a second adrift.

01 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 1:22.821 30 laps
02 Jenson Button McLaren 1:22.922 0.101 24 laps
03 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:23.397 0.576 24 laps
04 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:23.628 0.807 29 laps
05 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:23.633 0.812 24 laps
06 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:23.845 1.024 26 laps
07 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:23.904 1.083 25 laps
08 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus 1:23.983 1.162 24 laps
09 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1:24.152 1.331 24 laps
10 Sergio Perez Sauber 1:24.268 1.447 27 laps
11 Pastor Maldonado Williams 1:24.300 1.479 23 laps
12 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 1:24.394 1.573 19 laps
13 Mark Webber Red Bull 1:24.546 1.725 24 laps
14 Paul di Resta Force India 1:24.559 1.738 22 laps
15 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1:24.608 1.787 25 laps
16 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1:25.354 2.533 25 laps
17 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1:25.559 2.738 27 laps
18 Jules Bianchi Force India 1:25.715 2.894 26 laps
19 Vitaly Petrov Caterham 1:26.440 3.619 27 laps
20 Charles Pic Marussia 1:26.705 3.884 23 laps
21 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham 1:26.755 3.934 28 laps
22 Timo Glock Marussia 1:27.015 4.194 24 laps
23 Pedro de la Rosa HRT 1:27.101 4.280 21 laps
24 Dani Clos HRT 1:28.176 5.355 24 laps

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