British GP: Verstappen tops Hamilton, Hulkenberg returns

WION Web Team New Delhi, India Jul 31, 2020, 08.05 PM(IST)

Verstappen wins the race Photograph:( AFP )

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Max Verstappen toppled championship leader Lewis Hamilton in Friday’s opening free practice for this weekend’s much-awaited British Grand Prix. The Dutchman clocked the best lap in one minute and 27.422 seconds to beat Hamilton and Mercedes by 0.474 seconds.

Max Verstappen toppled championship leader Lewis Hamilton in Friday’s opening free practice for this weekend’s much-awaited British Grand Prix. The Dutchman clocked the best lap in one minute and 27.422 seconds to beat Hamilton and Mercedes by 0.474 seconds.

As the action began in the sunny weather at the fourth round of coronavirus-delayed Formula One season, Lance Stroll confirmed his potential of the controversial Racing Point ‘pink Mercedes’ by claiming third place ahead of Alexander Albon.

Charles Leclerc finished fifth for an improved Ferrari ahead of Valtteri Bottal. Esteban Ocon and his Renault team-mate Daniel Ricciardo, Nico Hulkenberg and Daniil Kvyat of Alpha Touri. 

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Hulkenberg, who was drafted overnight by the Silverstone-based Racing Point outfit, ended up being six-tenths off Stroll’s time, which is being touted as a really strong display given he had no idea he would be back in F1 24 hours back.

The German was just 1.1 seconds slower than Verstappen, challenging his integrity and originality. 

Hulkenberg was the cynosure of all eyes as he made his first F1 appearance since the end of last season. However, it was Briton Lando Norris who topped the early times for McLaren ahead of Verstappen’s Red Bull, who ended up cutting his time to take the top spot.

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The session was red-flagged to a halt after 28 minutes when Antonio Giovinazzi spun his Alfa Romeo at Becketts, moment after his teammate Kimi Raikkonen spun Luffield.

The action was resumed after clearing the debris but without Sebastian Vettel as Ferrari announced that he was grounded by an intercooler issue. 
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