Hamilton beats Rosberg in Mexican Grand Prix
LEWIS Hamilton headed championship rival Nico Rosberg in first practice at the Mexican Grand Prix.
Hamilton was 0.759 seconds ahead of Rosberg, exactly the sort of display he needs at a race he really needs to win to keep his title hopes alive.
Rosberg, who leads by 26 points with 75 points available from three races, will be crowned champion tomorrow if he wins and Hamilton is 10th or lower.
Hamilton was fastest and Rosberg only seventh in an inconclusive session.
On a chilly morning in Mexico City, with temperatures at the start of practice only 10C, the two Mercedes drivers set their best times on medium tyres, while the four drivers between them were on softer rubber.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was second fastest, 0.079secs behind Hamilton and just ahead of teammate Kimi Raikkonen, both using the soft tyre, and the Force Indias of local hero Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg next up on super-softs.
Williams’s Valtteri Bottas was sixth, also using the softs.It was an inconclusive session as a result of the different tyre choices and the constantly changing track surface at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, which started off extremely dusty and became quicker through the session as the circuit cleaned up.
But Mercedes did say that Rosberg had not had any problems, and the two Mercedes drivers did set their times at similar points in the session, when the difference in track surface would have been minimal.
The dirty track led to a number of drivers locking their wheels and running wide, but there was a bigger concern for Red Bull, where Max Verstappen suffered a rear brake fire midway through the session which damaged sensors and brought his running to an end. — BBCSport.