Photo: Mercedes Media House

F1 Miami GP FP1: Mercedes 1-2 leads opening session

George Russell was the fastest in a tricky opening practice session where drivers relearnt the newly resurfaced Miami GP circuits.

Russell set a time of  1m:30.125s, which was +0.212 faster than Lewis Hamilton who was followed by Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari who sat +0.324s off of the pace.

The first driver out on track was Fernando Alonso on his medium set of tyres to test the newly resurfaced Miami circuit.

The two Red Bulls found themselves drifting wide at turn one early in the session as they got used to the new tarmac while pushing.

George Russell had an awful start to his session though as he was struggling to steer the car, the Mercedes team had to remove a development item, which was making the car too heavy to steer.

Meanwhile, down at turn 12, Nick De Vries looped the car around, as he attempted to learn a circuit he had no racing experience around before.

This didn’t stop Verstappen from going fastest though in the first ten minutes, with him three-tenths ahead of Nico Hulkenberg in the Haas.

Another corner that a lot of drivers were struggling with was turn 17, with Kevin Magnussen and Lance Stroll finding it hard to get the car stopped for the corner.

Alex Albon embraced his inner Chelsea DeNofa as he got very tale happy at turn 15, with him making a great save to keep the car out of the wall.

There were more struggles at turn 17, with Valtteri Bottas locking up and going wide, as turn 17 and one fought for the trickiest corner of the weekend.

At the halfway point in the session, Haas was top with Hulkenberg and Magnussen sat in third as the two were split by Max Verstappen.

This wouldn’t last though with Verstappen going fastest by +0.338s from Hulkenberg with just under halfway to go in the session.

The good start for Hulkenberg ended quite abruptly though as he let the car run wide, spinning it into the wall at turn three bringing out the red flags with 26 minutes to go in the session.

The session got underway again with 18 minutes to go with the two Red Bulls leading the pack out of the pits.

Pierre Gasly had a high speed twitch coming out of turn five sending the car wide at six, which seemed to catch him off guard.

Then with under a minute to go in the session the Mercedes would top the session with a one two, which would round out the first session of the weekend.

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