Fernando Alonso (McLaren Mercedes) set a 1min 20.919secs lap time to end the first day of running for the Hungarian Grand Prix as the fastest driver. His time was set on Bridgestone's soft compound Potenza. Alonso's time came mid-way through the...
Fernando Alonso (McLaren Mercedes) set a 1min 20.919secs lap time to end the first day of running for the Hungarian Grand Prix as the fastest driver. His time was set on Bridgestone's soft compound Potenza.
Alonso's time came mid-way through the afternoon session. The world champion was over three tenths faster than the next quickest driver, Heikki Kovalainen (Renault), who was using the super soft compound. The top eleven drivers were within a second of Alonso and both tyres were used extensively throughout the session. The wet Potenza also made a brief appearance, after light rain fell on the track near the end of the session.
The understeer-inducing nature of the 'green' Hungaroring circuit layout today meant that graining was the challenge which met teams and drivers. The track is one of the less frequently used of those on the F1 calendar. The first day's running here saw significant improvements in the amount of grip developed by the Bridgestone Potenzas, as the track was cleaned by the cars running and the surface 'rubbered-in'.
The morning practice session was sunnier than the afternoon and the soft compound was used the most by the teams. The fastest lap of the session, however, was set on the super soft compound by BMW Sauber driver Robert Kubica. The pole, who made his F1 race debut here last season, set his 1min 22.390secs time late in the session.
Kees van de Grint, Bridgestone Motorsport Head of Track Engineering Operations:
"Today was a very interesting day. In the first session the track was very dusty but it rubbered-in quite quickly. Although graining was the issue for both compounds, the amount of graining decreased as the track improved. The super soft compound suffered more than the soft, but it provided higher grip. If the track continues to improve as it has today I am confident we have selected the correct compounds to work well in the race without any limitations."
Stats of the Day
Total amount of laps completed by all drivers: 1223 laps
Average number of laps per driver: 56 laps
Most laps by a driver: 67 - Jenson Button
Fastest lap: 1min 20.919secs - Alonso (FP2)
Compounds used: Soft, super soft and wet