Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) ended the first day's running for the Turkish Grand Prix as the fastest driver of the day, using the hard compound Bridgestone Potenza to set a lap time of 1min 27.088secs in the morning 90 minute free practice session.
Raikkonen was the only driver in the 1min 27s, and next fastest was team-mate Felipe Massa, the only driver with a time in the 1min 28s. Massa was also on the hard compound. The hard tyre was used most numerously in this session, with the medium only used by nine cars, late in the session.
Heat was a big issue today with the track temperature reaching a maximum of 48C and the ambient temperature reaching 36C. The hot conditions, allied to the 'green' track, made conditions difficult for teams and drivers to find a good set-up to maximise grip.
The afternoon practice session was particularly draining for drivers who had to wait in the searing temperatures for a track repair to take place, meaning their running was reduced by approximately 20 minutes. The fastest time in this session was set by Lewis Hamilton (McLaren Mercedes) in the first half hour of the session on the hard tyre.
Kees van de Grint, Bridgestone Motorsport Head of Track Engineering Operations:
"Conditions today were very tough and this was partly due to the heat and partly due to the dusty surface of the track. We prepared for the expected heat by bringing the two hardest compounds in our 2007 range, but this meant that grip levels were low on the slippery circuit."
"Graining was not an issue today, but heat durability was, as the tyres have to absorb high temperatures, especially in Turn 8. For those who noticed it, and for those who did not, Nico Rosberg did run on a set of medium compound tyres today with no marking on the front, this was a mistake on our behalf."
Stats of the Day
Total amount of laps completed by all drivers: 1035 laps
Average number of laps per driver: 47 laps
Most laps by a driver: 67 - Sakon Yamamoto
Fastest lap: 1min 27.988secs - Raikkonen (FP1)
Compounds used: Hard, medium