2012 Canadian Grand Prix first practice
Lewis Hamilton led the way in the first practice session for the Canadian Grand Prix.
The McLaren driver set a fastest time of 1’15.564 on the soft tyres, just over a tenth of a second fastest than Sebastian Vettel.
With occasional drops of rain falling at the track, and heavier rain expected during the second practice session, the teams wasted no times in getting the day’s running started.
Several teams had aerodynamic testing to do. Ferrari as usual had liberal amounts of flow-vis applied to their rear wings.
Red Bull had substantial flow measurement arrays fitted to both cars, as well as special cameras directed at different points of their cars.
Hamilton was immediately on the pace after taking to the track, reeling off a quick sequence of laps to lead the times.
Early in the second half of the session Heikki Kovalainen lost the back end of his car coming out of turn nine. As he tried to straighten up his Caterham the car snapped right and hit the wall heavily on the right, taking two wheels off it.
The session was stopped for around 15 minutes while the Caterham was recovered, restarting with around half an hour to go.
After the session resumed Nico Rosberg briefly took over at the top of the times before Hamilton produced another improvement to beat it again.
Both Red Bull drivers improved their times in the final minutes of the session on super-soft tyres. Vettel’s last effort produced a 1’15.682, good enough for second.
However the stewards are investigating an incident between him and Williams driver Bruno Senna at the chicane at the end of the lap during the session, when Vettel overtook Senna and the pair made contact.
Fernando Alonso was fourth-quickest for Ferrari who tested a new configuration of exhaust exit on their F2012.
Mark Webber was sixth ahead of Nico Hulkenberg and the Saubers of Kamui Kobayshi and Sergio Perez.
Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button completed the top ten, the latter slowed by a slipping clutch during the first session.
2012 Canadian Grand Prix
- Hamilton seventh Driver of the Weekend winner
- Canadian GP gets another high rating
- Top ten pictures from the 2012 Canadian Grand Prix
- Vote for your Canadian GP driver of the weekend
- Third Canada win for Hamilton in 300th race for McLaren-Mercedes
Image © Caterham/LAT