Canadian Grand Prix: Max Verstappen fastest in first practice

Kristopher Nichols
June 10, 2018

"If I get any more I might headbutt someone".

Vettel was delighted with his lap, which was Ferrari's first pole in Canada since 2001.

Asked why he had experienced so many crashes, he paused before he said: "I don't know".

Verstappen was one of the star performers on Saturday afternoon, splitting the Mercedes drivers for a spot on the second row.

TOP TEN: Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari), Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes), Max Verstappen (Red Bull), Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari), Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull), Nico Hulkenberg (Renault), Esteban Ocon (Force India), Carlos Sainz (Renault), Sergio Perez (Force India).

"I think I was a bit in trouble after Friday practice, but I guess I woke up the right way today".

Vettel, meanwhile, was forced to miss the start of FP2 after lengthy set-up changes were made to his vehicle, and he conceded that Ferrari have work to do ahead of qualifying.

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He said: "I am happy with this weekend so far".

After a strong weekend, Max Verstappen was unable to replicate his pace from the previous three practice sessions and had to settle for the third row on the grid, his lap however still impressive. "Having such good momentum at the moment, I think a penalty would really take a lot of the wind out of our sails".

On a dry and sunlit day, there was immediate drama when Romain Grosjean pulled up in the pit-lane with clouds of smoke billowing from his Haas car's Ferrari engine. "But for sure qualifying is not as important as Sunday so we've got to go well then too".

Vettel ended Q1 on top ahead of the Finn with Hamilton third, but it was tense for McLaren as twice former champion Fernando Alonso squeezed into Q2 at the end in 14th place ahead of team mate Stoffel Vandoorne.

Mercedes asked for so few hyper-softs because they believe it will be a poor race tyre but Red Bull proved at the last race in Monaco that they can run it longer and more competitively than other teams and Verstappen is confident he can challenge the Ferraris and Mercedes in the race.

Despite his hard start to the season, Verstappen is often praised for being one of the exciting drivers and prospects in Formula 1, with many believing he's a champion waiting for his chance.

Verstappen arrived in Montreal under attack from all corners, after an incident-filled start to the season in which the 20-year-old reach the podium once in six races, while Ricciardo has recorded a pair of wins.

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