No surprises in Austin USGP FP1

Lewis Hamilton topped the timesheet in opening practice for the United States Grand Prix, running three tenths quicker than team-mate and title rival Nico Rosberg. Max Verstappen was third for Red Bull.

Hamilton’s best time was set on the soft tyre after both he and Rosberg spent the early part of the session on the supersoft Pirelli compound, which is making its first appearance at the US Grand Prix this weekend.

Verstappen, meanwhile, set his best time on the medium tyre, which in part accounted for his being almost two seconds adrift of Hamilton’s time.

Verstappen finished just under three hundredths of a second clear of Kimi Raikkonen, though, like the Mercedes duo, the Ferrari driver set his best time on the soft tyre.

Nico Hulkenberg, who was recently announced as a 2017 works driver for Renault, finished the opening session in fifth place. The German kept Force India ahead of Williams in the tight battle for fourth place in the Constructors’ Championship, though he finished less than 0.1s ahead of Valtteri Bottas. Both set their best laps on soft tyres.

Daniel Ricciardo in the second Red Bull was seventh fastest and like team-mate Verstappen, the Australian only used the medium tyre during the session. Sebastian Vettel was eighth in the second Ferrari.

The final top ten positions were taken the Toro Rosso pairing of Daniil Kvyat, ninth, and Carlos Sainz. Both of the Italian squad’s drivers set their best times of the session on the supersoft tyres.

Behind them Felipe Massa finished in P11 ahead of Sauber’s Felipe Nasr and McLaren’s Fernando Alonso.

US team Haas opened their first home grand prix weekend with 14th and 15th places for Romain Grosjean and Esteban Gutierrez respectively. It was a tricky session for the home squad, with Grosjean damaging his car when he ran hard over the kerbs. Gutierrez then rtan over the debris moments later. Both drivers halted in the pit lane and had to be pushed back to the team’s garage,

Elsewhere there was a grand prix weekend for Briton Jordan King who took over the Manor of Pascal Wehrlein. King had a good outing, finishing in P20 ahead of Esteban Ocon on the other Manor, though the duo used different compounds to set their best times.

1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m37.428s - 252. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m37.743s 0.315s 273. Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault 1m39.379s 1.951s 284. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m39.407s 1.979s 215. Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m39.712s 2.284s 276. Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m39.776s 2.348s 307. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m39.963s 2.535s 268. Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m39.988s 2.560s 159. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso/Ferrari 1m40.131s 2.703s 1610 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso/Ferrari 1m40.140s 2.712s 2611 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m40.191s 2.763s 2712 Felipe Nasr Sauber/Ferrari 1m40.287s 2.859s 1613 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Honda 1m40.362s 2.934s 2614 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1m40.826s 3.398s 1515 Esteban Gutierrez Haas/Ferrari 1m40.970s 3.542s 1516 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m41.170s 3.742s 1717 Alfonso Celis Force India/Mercedes 1m41.422s 3.994s 2718 Jenson Button McLaren/Honda 1m41.663s 4.235s 2119 Kevin Magnussen Renault 1m41.942s 4.514s 2220 Jordan King Manor/Mercedes 1m42.012s 4.584s 2921 Jolyon Palmer Renault 1m42.332s 4.904s 3122 Esteban Ocon Manor/Mercedes 1m43.874s 6.446s 27

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