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Practice one - McLaren one-two in damp-dry session 18 Jul 2008

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4/23.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, German Grand Prix, Practice Day, Hockenheim, Germany, Friday, 18 July 2008 Robert Kubica loses control of his BMW Sauber Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, German Grand Prix, Practice Day, Hockenheim, Germany, Friday, 18 July 2008

McLaren set the pace here in Hockenheim in Friday morning’s opening practice session for the German Grand Prix, on a track that started out wet and got drier and faster as the hour-and-a-half session progressed.

Heikki Kovalainen went fastest in the dying seconds, his 1m 15.666s lap depriving Ferrari’s Felipe Massa (1m 15.796s) of that honour, only for team mate Lewis Hamilton to take the top slot in similar fashion moments later with 1m 15.537s.

Fernando Alonso was fourth for Renault on 1m 16.163s, while Kimi Raikkonen’s fifth best time of 1m 16.327s for Ferrari need not be taken as an indication of his true potential. Much depended on when you ran, and what fuel load you were carrying.

Nico Rosberg’s prediction that Hockenheim would suit Williams has been born out thus far as the German set the sixth fastest time of 1m 16.606s, and team mate Kazuki Nakajima backed him solidly with 1m 16.821s which left him ninth. Between them were Sebastian Vettel’s 1m 16.618s for Toro Rosso, and Nick Heidfeld’s 1m 16.719s for BMW Sauber.

Robert Kubica, in the second F1.08, was only 19th, however, after dropping it going into the stadium and sliding broadside all the way across the gravel bed and into the tyre wall having recorded 1m 18.779s with 15 minutes left to go.

Nelson Piquet completed the top 10 for Renault, with 1m 17.063s, then came Red Bull’s David Coulthard (1m 17.108s), Honda’s Jenson Button (1m 17.131s), Toyota’s Timo Glock (1m 17.185s), Red Bull’s Mark Webber (1m 17.268s), Force India’s Giancarlo Fisichella (1m 17.471s), Honda’s Rubens Barrichello (1m 17.500s), Toyota’s Jarno Trulli (1m 17.556s) and Force India’s Adrian Sutil (1m 17.784s).

Toro Rosso’s Sebastien Bourdais was 20th on 1m 21.506s, having gone off the road in Turn One early on and then stopped at Turn Four. Other miscreants included Hamilton, who spun in Turn Four, Alonso who went off in Turn Six, and Coulthard who went off in Two.