The first 90 minute session for the 2008 Japanese Grand Prix has come to a close with McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton at the top of the timing sheet. The McLaren driver was closely followed by Felipe Massa a little over a tenth behind, while Heikki Kovalainen posted the third best time of the morning 0.2s shy of Massa. Kimi Raikkonen completed the McLaren/Ferrari sequence by going fourth and Renault slotted into fifth and sixth with Fernando Alonso going faster than Nelson Piquet Jr.
The session saw no adverse weather and no real surprises, although David Coulthard found himself towards the bottom of the tables in nineteenth and just ahead of Force India pilot Giancarlo Fisichella. Conversely, Fisichella’s team mate Adrian Sutil ran well and found himself in eleventh after the ninety minutes were up. Scuderia Toro Rosso drivers Sebastian Vettel and Sebastien Bourdais enjoyed a good start to their weekend’s as well with Vettel getting into seventh and Bourdais in ninth.
All the cars were running the green-striped Bridgestone tyre, designed to promote environmental causes. Of course, they looked terrible on all but the Hondas, the subtle green on the Japanese cars managing to make the tyres look only just bearable. The busiest driver of the morning was Timo Glock, completing 37 laps in his Toyota. The least busiest was Heikki Kovalainen, only feeling the need to tour the Fuji Speedway 20 times.
The difference between the fastest and slowest laps was only 2.104s and the Japanese squads did not make a great impression; Honda in sixteenth and seventeenth and Toyota in fifteenth and eighteenth. Williams driver and local hero Kazuki Nakajima placed himself in tenth, powered by the Toyota engine.
Fuji 2008: Friday Free Practice One
|1.||Lewis Hamilton||McLaren||1m18.910s||23 Laps|
|2.||Felipe Massa||Ferrari||1m19.063s||24 Laps|
|3.||Heikki Kovalainen||McLaren||1m19.279s||20 Laps|
|4.||Kimi Raikkonen||Ferrari||1m19.399s||31 Laps|
|5.||Fernando Alonso||Renault||1m19.473s||30 Laps|
|6.||Nelson Piquet Jr.||Renault||1m19.743s||35 Laps|
|7.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Toro Rosso||1m20.121s||30 Laps|
|8.||Robert Kubica||BMW||1m20.160s||26 Laps|
|9.||Sebastien Bourdais||Scuderia Toro Rosso||1m20.182s||34 Laps|
|10.||Kazuki Nakajima||Williams||1m20.217s||25 Laps|
|11.||Adrian Sutil||Force India||1m20.288s||26 Laps|
|12.||Nico Rosberg||Williams||1m20.350s||28 Laps|
|13.||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing||1m20.620s||24 Laps|
|14.||Nick Heidfeld||BMW||1m20.628s||23 Laps|
|15.||Jarno Trulli||Toyota||1m20.657s||33 Laps|
|16.||Rubens Barrichello||Honda||1m20.753s||32 Laps|
|17.||Jenson Button||Honda||1m20.769s||27 Laps|
|18.||Timo Glock||Toyota||1m20.823s||37 Laps|
|19.||David Coulthard||Red Bull Racing||1m20.905s||24 Laps|
|20.||Giancarlo Fishcella||Force India||1m21.014s||28 Laps|
Images Copyright © Williams and HondaF1.