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Norris tops timesheets after first day of Barcelona pre-season running

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Lando Norris set the fastest overall time in the opening pre-season session at Barcelona for McLaren, eclipsing the morning benchmark set by Ferrari's Charles Leclerc.

Wednesday saw the first proper running of the 2022 Formula 1 cars, and plenty of intrigue to boot – after Alfa Romeo and Haas unveiled their contenders to the world in the Catalunya pit lane, and Red Bull's RB18 proper broke cover too.

READ MORE: ‘I feel the freshest I ever have’ says Hamilton as he hits the track in Barcelona

Leclerc's morning time of 1m 20.165s put him top before Norris eclipsed that, improving to 1m 19.568s by the end of Day 1. That bumped Leclerc down to P2 and his Ferrari team mate Carlos Sainz to third.

George Russell finished fourth, before Mercedes team mate Hamilton took over the W13 in the afternoon to take fifth place.

Timing

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Sebastian Vettel dropped from P4 in the morning to sixth overall before Aston Martin team mate Lance Stroll (P13) took the wheel in the afternoon. AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda enjoyed a full day’s running and clocked 121 laps to take seventh overall ahead of Alpine driver Fernando Alonso (P8).

Max Verstappen also drove for the full day and took P9, but completed the highest tally – 147 laps – a brief off-track excursion in the morning the only blemish on his day.

In 10th was Alfa Romeo's Valtteri Bottas, the Finn completing just under 25 laps as the team had a stuttering start to their session – reserve driver Robert Kubica having completed a handful of morning installation laps to end up 16th.

GALLERY: The 2022-spec Formula 1 cars hit the track as Barcelona pre-season running begins

BARCELONA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 23: Nicholas Latifi of Canada driving the (6) Williams FW44 Mercedes

Verstappen finished with the highest lap count of any driver; Latifi helped Williams hit a century of laps alongside Albon

Eleventh-place driver Alex Albon was the fastest of the Williams pair, his team mate Nicholas Latifi 14th. And Mick Schumacher was the fastest of the two Haas drivers, taking P12 after floor damage stunted his afternoon running – while team mate Nikita Mazepin finished 15th, having driven in the morning.

Every team bar Alfa Romeo and Haas completed a century of laps on the opening day.

Five drivers – Zhou Guanyu, Esteban Ocon, Daniel Ricciardo, Pierre Gasly and Sergio Perez – are yet to take the wheel, with plenty of running remaining over the next two days.

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