Verstappen from Red Bull was the fastest in today’s session. His quickest lap time recorded was 1m18.790s. Lewis Hamilton from Mercedes was a close second, however he didn’t have an easy start as his car wasn’t handling well with the harder tyres. He wasn’t doing as well compared to his team-mate George Russell during the early stages.
Sergio Perez took third position during the second Red Bull race, even though he only set his fastest time with medium tires. Meanwhile, Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin was behind him. On top of that, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz from Ferrari had an accident in a turn in the middle of the session when their car suddenly veered towards the right.
During the first practice session at Albert Park, several drivers struggled with their cars. AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda had an especially bad time; his car spun around and even flew into a gravel trap after he took a turn too quickly. This happened because there was really strong wind blowing across the track, which made it harder for drivers using soft tyres.
Lando Norris drove a McLaren car to finish seventh in the race, followed by Pierre Gasly in the Alpine car and Lance Stroll and Russell in their Aston Martins. Everyone’s best performance on the track was done using medium tyres except for Lance Stroll.
Max Verstappen was at the front leading everyone else but he wasn’t driving as smooth as he wanted; often missing turns one and two, once even having to catch a slippery slide soon after turn two.
At the end of the race, he drove too far off the track at the 4th turn, on worn-out tires. This is where Sebastian Vettel crashed his car in a similar way during last year’s competition.
Right around the middle of the race, a system called ‘GPS’ was not working properly. This caused some drivers to almost crash into each other because they didn’t know where all the other cars on the track were. Because of this danger, a nine-minute break (red flag) was taken while they sorted out the issue and at the end of it another driver had to stop his car because he thought there might have been an electric problem.
The FIA (the governing body of Formula One racing) has banned jacks from touching F1 cars during pitstop penalties after the issue was reviewed by Alonso. We have also explained the technical images of F1 taken in the pitlane. Lastly, Hamilton mentioned that being in the cockpit of a W14 gives him the ‘worst feelings’.