Formula 1: Australia Grand Prix Friday Practice Wrap Up

Published by Miles Downard Date: March 14, 2014
Categories: Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz Racing

An interesting day indeed as the Formula One circus fired up their engines for the official start of the 2014 season in Australia. As drivers and teams alike continue to learn new aspects of their cars performance, the pecking order is slowly starting to reveal itself.

Australia Grand Prix

Pre-season testing pegged Mercedes as the team to beat; hell Christian Horner went as far as to say that he wouldn’t be surprised if a Merc won the season opener by two laps. Day 1 in Australia seemed to ultimately confirm their competitiveness, but not without a hiccup in Practice 1 when an oil sensor fault on Lewis’ W05 caused his engine to shut down. The team were unable to get the car back in time for a repair; meaning Lewis went into Practice 2 without completing a flying lap.

In the end though, the Mercedes’ drivers marched home with the two fastest laps of the day and without further glitches. Nico Rosberg was 0.157 seconds slower than his teammate.

F1-Australia-2014

Williams also showed promise in pre-season testing; and for the first time in a long while there have been a few F1 pundits backing the Grove based outfit. The Bottas-Massa pairing fared well, ending P1 in 3rd and 4th respectively. P2 saw the team focus efforts on the harder compound tyre.

Ferrari were the first team out on track this morning; Fernando Alonso claiming the honour of kicking off the new era of Formula One. The Spaniard fortuitously claimed top spot in P1 after trading fastest laps with McLaren’s Jenson Button. Kimi Raikkonen suffered a few technical glitches, but looked typically disinterested throughout the whole affair, ending 9th and 7th respectively.

Surprisingly enough Red Bull, who completed more distance travelling to and from the hotel than on track during pre-season testing, looked to have made a fair deal of progress with their reliability issues. Maybe not so surprisingly the RB10 was pretty quick when everything fell into place.

Further down the pack it was McLaren, Force India and Toro Rosso who were busiest, completing the most laps across the two sessions.

By the end of P2, only 19 drivers managed to set a competitive time; Kamui Kobayashi's Caterham was unable to leave the garage due to a "power unit-related fuel system issue"; team-mate Marcus Ericsson was at least able to get onto the circuit, but returned swiftly thanks to a hydraulics problem on his installation lap.

Pastor Maldonado left the garage in his Lotus, but only just as he stopped in the pitlane with a suspected ERS problem. This rounded off an awful day for Lotus as Romain Grosjean was second slowest overall and ploughed his E22 into a wall.

Formula 1

Practice 1 Results:

Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap Laps

1

Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m31.840s

20

2

Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m32.357s +0.517s

23

3

Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m32.403s +0.563s

27

4

Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m32.431s +0.591s

19

5

Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m32.599s +0.759s

26

6

Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m32.604s +0.764s

17

7

Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m32.793s +0.953s

10

8

Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m32.847s +1.007s

28

9

Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m32.977s +1.137s

18

10

Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m33.446s +1.606s

30

11

Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m33.533s +1.693s

23

12

Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m33.855s +2.015s

24

13

Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m34.272s +2.432s

27

14

Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m35.578s +3.738s

7

15

Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m36.445s +4.605s

13

16

Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m40.859s +9.019s

6

17

Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m46.922s +15.082s

4

18

Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault

1

19

Lewis Hamilton Mercedes

1

20

Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault

1

21

Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault

2

22

Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault

 

 

Practice 2 Results:

Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap Laps

1

Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m29.625s

37

2

Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m29.782s +0.157s

31

3

Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m30.132s +0.507s

28

4

Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m30.381s +0.756s

41

5

Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m30.510s +0.885s

33

6

Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m30.538s +0.913s

38

7

Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m30.898s +1.273s

32

8

Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m30.920s +1.295s

38

9

Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m31.031s +1.406s

34

10

Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m31.054s +1.429s

33

11

Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m31.060s +1.435s

35

12

Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m31.119s +1.494s

31

13

Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m31.283s +1.658s

36

14

Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m32.355s +2.730s

36

15

Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m32.468s +2.843s

26

16

Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m32.495s +2.870s

36

17

Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m33.486s +3.861s

29

18

Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m33.646s +4.021s

12

19

Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m34.757s +5.132s

29

20

Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault

1

21

Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault

22

Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault