Belgian GP FP1 Roundup: Bottas On Top, Ferraris Focus on Race Pace

Bottas topped the timing sheet in FP1, but had to end the session early.

Valtteri Bottas has topped the timing sheet in Free Practice 1 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on Friday morning after marginally outpacing teammate Lewis Hamilton during their runs on the soft tyre.

However, Bottas’ FP1 was cut short as he suffered a puncture after driving over a curb in the dying minutes of the session.

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Max Verstappen was less than a tenth of a second off Bottas’ pace, suggesting he could challenge the Silver Arrows on race day.

The two Mercedes-powered Racing Point cars also showed good pace. Sergio Perez put in a faster time than Canadian youngster Lance Stroll, with the pair ending up fourth and fifth in the session.

Meanwhile, Ferrari focussed on long-run pace and seemed to be struggling, with Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel ending the session 14th and 15th, respectively.

Leclerc was around 1.25 seconds off the pace, while Vettel trailed Bottas’ best time by almost 1.7 seconds.

Three Ferrari-powered cars – the two Haas cars and Antonio Giovinazzi’s Alfa Romeo – had engine issues and didn’t complete a single lap in the session.

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