Hamil­ton sets pace in Austria

The Asian Age - - Games -

Spielberg (Austria), July 3: De­fend­ing six-time cham­pion Lewis Hamil­ton topped the times ahead of Mercedes team­mate Valt­teri Bot­tas as For­mula One roared back at Fri­day’s open­ing prac­tice at the be­lated and sur­real sea­son-open­ing Austrian Grand Prix.

Three months af­ter the can­cel­la­tion of the orig­i­nal cam­paign starter in Aus­tralia and six months on from the last race meet­ing, it was busi­ness as usual for the dom­i­nant black ar­rows with Max Ver­stap­pen third for Red Bull ahead of McLaren’s Fer­rari-bound Car­los Sainz.

Af­ter a slow start on a damp sur­face at the Red Bull Ring, fol­low­ing overnight rain, Hamil­ton, sport­ing a new Black Lives Mat­ter hel­met to match his black race suit, was on the pace im­me­di­ately in his W11 car of the same colour.

It was as if the lengthy de­lay cre­ated by the Covid19 pan­demic had no af­fect on the teams, cars and driv­ers other than Fer­rari whose new SF91 ma­chine was, as fore­cast, un­able to match the pace set at the front by Mercedes.

Fer­rari plan to re­vise their car with up­dates for the Hun­gar­ian race in two weeks time fol­low­ing the sec­ond event in Austria next week.

AFP

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