The Monegasque Charles Leclerc (Ferrari), leader of the Formula One World Championship, was the fastest this Friday in the first free practice for the Miami Grand Prix, in the United States, the fifth of the season, which takes place this weekend on the circuit built around the Hard Rock Stadium in the aforementioned Florida town.
In his best lap, Leclerc covered the 5,412 meters of the new Miami track in 1:31.98, 71 thousandths less than Englishman George Russell (Mercedes). It was a session in which the Red Bulls of the Dutchman Max Verstappen, last world champion, and the Mexican Sergio Pérez marked the third and fourth times, at 179 and 203 thousandths, respectively. They all turned on soft tyres.
Verstappen, aboard his Red Bull. Photo: AFP
Lewis Hamilton, with the other Silver Date, achieved the eighth fastest time behind Pierre Gasly (Alpha Tauri), Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) and Alexander Albon (Williams), who were fifth, sixth and seventh in the initial trial.
The session, beyond the tests of all the pilots, was quite eventful. The Finn Valtteri Bottas continued by with his Alfa Romeo and hit a retaining wall. His accident forced the cranes to enter and paralyzed a good part of the rehearsal.
Sainz did not have a good start to the day either, with the other Ferrari. After hitting a fence and causing a cut on his head when he had not yet gotten into the car, he suffered a flat tire that cost him a lot of time.
The second free practice will take place at half past five in the afternoon (7:30 p.m. in Argentina).