Practice One - first blood to Ferrari in Turkey 24 Aug 2007
Kimi Raikkonen stamped his authority on proceedings as practice got underway this morning in Istanbul Park. The Finn was the pacesetter throughout the hour-and-a-half session, eventually working his way down to a best of 1m 27.988s, which compares with Ferrari team mate Felipe Massas 1m 26.907s pole last year. The Brazilian was second fastest, 0.403s behind on 1m 28.391s.
And then there was a gap of almost a second to the McLarens. Lewis Hamilton was third right up until the end on 1m 29.361s, when Fernando Alonso took the place with 1m 29.222s. Food for thought for the silver arrows team after a day spent yesterday trying to effect a bond between their warring drivers, but nothing to get too excited about at this early stage.
It was a bit of a wild session, with lots of drivers having off-track moments on the green surface: Raikkonen, Massa, Giancarlo Fisichella, Heikki Kovalainen, Sebastian Vettel and Adrian Sutil. And Sakon Yamamoto, Jarno Trulli, Ralf Schumacher, Mark Webber and David Coulthard all spun. In Coulthards case it is likely to have been a fuel leak that caused his Red Bull to snap away from him in Turn 5 right at the end as flames licked around its rear end. Marshals quickly doused them, but the RB3 will take a bit of cleaning up before this afternoons session.
Kovalainen was the best of the rest for Renault, taking fifth place on 1m 29.346s to head Williams Nico Rosberg (1m 29.403s), Schumacher (1m 29.414s) in the Toyota, Fisichella (1m 29.541s) in the second Renault, Nick Heidfeld (1m 29.641s) for BMW Sauber, Trulli (1m 29.685s) for Toyota and Robert Kubica (1m 29.710s) in the second BMW.
Anthony Davidson headed the next group with 1m 30.384s for Super Aguri, chased by Coulthard (1m 30.398s), Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello in the Hondas (1m 30.483s and 1m 30.580s respectively), Tonio Liuzzi (1m 30.612s) for Toro Rosso, Takuma Sato (1m 30.624s) in the sister Super Aguri, Williams Alex Wurz (1m 30.876s) and Webber (1m 30.917s) for Red Bull.
At the back, Vettel was 20th on 1m 31.383s for Toro Rosso, ahead of the Spyker duo with Sutil on 1m 31.445s and Yamamoto on 1m 32.270s.