F1 Grand Prix practice results: Bottas, Perez fastest in Austin

Valtteri Bottas recorded the fastest time on the opening day of United States Grand Prix practice at the Circuit of the Americas, the 17th round of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship season.

F1 Grand Prix practice results: Bottas, Perez fastest in Austin
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Bottas set the quickest time of the day in FP1, which was fractionally faster than Red Bull’s Sergio Perez managed when he topped FP2 later in the afternoon.

US Grand Prix FP1 results: Bottas fastest from Hamilton

Cla Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap Interval km/h
1 Finland Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 17 1'34.874     209.191
2 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 18 1'34.919 0.045 0.045 209.091
3 Netherlands Max Verstappen Red Bull 16 1'35.806 0.932 0.887 207.156
4 Monaco Charles Leclerc Ferrari 18 1'36.334 1.460 0.528 206.020
5 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. Ferrari 20 1'36.508 1.634 0.174 205.649
6 France Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 18 1'36.611 1.737 0.103 205.430
7 Mexico Sergio Perez Red Bull 20 1'36.798 1.924 0.187 205.033
8 United Kingdom Lando Norris McLaren 11 1'36.855 1.981 0.057 204.912
9 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 18 1'36.874 2.000 0.019 204.872
10 Finland Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo 18 1'36.876 2.002 0.002 204.868
11 United Kingdom George Russell Williams 19 1'36.966 2.092 0.090 204.677
12 France Esteban Ocon Alpine 22 1'36.970 2.096 0.004 204.669
13 Canada Lance Stroll Aston Martin 20 1'36.972 2.098 0.002 204.665
14 Germany Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 20 1'36.982 2.108 0.010 204.644
15 Spain Fernando Alonso Alpine 12 1'37.068 2.194 0.086 204.462
16 Australia Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 18 1'37.458 2.584 0.390 203.644
17 Canada Nicholas Latifi Williams 19 1'37.463 2.589 0.005 203.634
18 Japan Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 22 1'37.954 3.080 0.491 202.613
19 Germany Mick Schumacher Haas 17 1'38.866 3.992 0.912 200.744
20 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin Haas 19 1'42.239 7.365 3.373 194.121

What happened in Free Practice 1?

Following an early red flag for Fernando Alonso’s Alpine grinding to a halt at the end of the back straight, Lewis Hamilton set the early pace for Mercedes at 1m36.812s on the soft tyre, 0.043s quicker than Lando Norris (McLaren) with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen a couple of tenths further back.

Perez briefly went fastest by 0.014s on the hard tyre before Hamilton improved again – still running his first set of softs – to 1m36.381s.

Verstappen took over at the top with 1m36.049s before Hamilton produced 1m35.096s and then Bottas set the quickest lap of the session of 1m34.874s. Hamilton improved to within 0.045s of Bottas’s time, while Verstappen also went faster but was still 0.9s off the Mercedes pace.

Charles Leclerc spun his Ferrari at high speed at the Esses but kept it out of the wall. He recovered to finish fourth fastest, 1.46s off the pace, ahead of teammate Carlos Sainz.

Kimi Raikkonen spun his Alfa Romeo in the closing moments at Turn 9.

US Grand Prix FP2 results: Perez fastest from Norris

Cla Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap Interval km/h
1 Mexico Sergio Perez Red Bull 24 1'34.946     209.032
2 United Kingdom Lando Norris McLaren 20 1'35.203 0.257 0.257 208.468
3 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 22 1'35.310 0.364 0.107 208.234
4 Finland Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 24 1'35.360 0.414 0.050 208.125
5 Australia Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 21 1'35.457 0.511 0.097 207.913
6 Canada Lance Stroll Aston Martin 25 1'35.561 0.615 0.104 207.687
7 Monaco Charles Leclerc Ferrari 23 1'35.572 0.626 0.011 207.663
8 Netherlands Max Verstappen Red Bull 23 1'35.824 0.878 0.252 207.117
9 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. Ferrari 24 1'35.919 0.973 0.095 206.912
10 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 26 1'36.138 1.192 0.219 206.440
11 France Esteban Ocon Alpine 23 1'36.158 1.212 0.020 206.397
12 France Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 25 1'36.242 1.296 0.084 206.217
13 Spain Fernando Alonso Alpine 18 1'36.376 1.430 0.134 205.930
14 Finland Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo 25 1'36.558 1.612 0.182 205.542
15 Germany Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 30 1'36.718 1.772 0.160 205.202
16 Japan Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 24 1'36.983 2.037 0.265 204.642
17 Germany Mick Schumacher Haas 24 1'37.041 2.095 0.058 204.519
18 Canada Nicholas Latifi Williams 26 1'37.254 2.308 0.213 204.071
19 United Kingdom George Russell Williams 21 1'37.490 2.544 0.236 203.577
20 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin Haas 23 1'38.026 3.080 0.536 202.464

What happened in Free Practice 2?

In FP2, Perez set the initial pace on medium tyres, 0.004s ahead of Bottas, Verstappen and Hamilton.

While Bottas and Perez swapped the fastest time between them, Verstappen and Hamilton raced side by side around the final corner and along the start/finish straight. “Stupid idiot,” said Verstappen on team radio, and gave his title rival the middle finger gesture.  

Teams then switched to soft tyre running, with Hamilton lapping in 1m34.842s – which would have been the quickest of the day – but his time was deleted for exceeding track limits at Turn 19.

Perez then produced 1m34.946s to top the session, a quarter of a second ahead of Norris. Hamilton was only able to lap third quickest on his second run, while Verstappen repeatedly got caught in traffic and angrily bailed out completely on his qualifying simulation.

Bottas was fourth in this session, 0.414s off the pace, ahead of Ricciardo.

Alonso suffered a late spin at Turn 19 and tapped the wall.

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