Mexican GP: Verstappen tops practice 1 track cleaning session

As CART found out when they raced there over 10 years ago, the Autodromo Hernandez Rodriguez is very dusty for the opening practice session and the session is spent cleaning the track.

Drivers started the session on the intermediates after overnight rain in Mexico City left the circuit damp.

Conditions were tricky due to the combination of a wet track and the dust, with Sebastian Vettel reporting to his crew that it was "ridiculously slippery".

Max Verstappen turned the fastest lap for Toro Rosso at 1m25.990s, but what was even more surprising was the Mercedes duo down in 6th and 11th.

Both Mercedes' were having braking cooling issues and Rosberg's rear brakes actually caught on fire causing him to lose valuable time. With the thin air of Mexico City (2,200 foot altitude) the downforce from the wings is not as effective so stopping distances are elongated and the brakes have to work harder. Could this issue catch them out this weekend?

Daniil Kvyat, Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel rounded out the top-5. Simulations have the lap times getting down to under 1m20s for qualifying.

Results

Pos Driver Car Time Behind Laps
1 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso/Renault 1m25.990s 0.000s 38
2 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull/Renault 1m26.295s 0.305s 27
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari/Ferrari 1m26.295s 0.305s 36
4 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari/Ferrari 1m26.886s 0.896s 31
5 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m27.185s 1.195s 28
6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes/Mercedes 1m27.196s 1.206s 19
7 Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m27.303s 1.313s 26
8 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso/Renault 1m27.410s 1.420s 37
9 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m27.581s 1.591s 19
10 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m27.695s 1.705s 24
11 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes/Mercedes 1m27.723s 1.733s 27
12 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m28.498s 2.508s 27
13 Pastor Maldonado Lotus/Mercedes 1m28.559s 2.569s 30
14 Felipe Nasr Sauber/Ferrari 1m28.579s 2.589s 25
15 Jolyon Palmer Lotus/Mercedes 1m28.711s 2.721s 24
16 Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m29.099s 3.109s 16
17 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Honda 1m30.072s 4.082s 17
18 Alexander Rossi Marussia/Ferrari 1m30.619s 4.629s 23
19 Jenson Button McLaren/Honda 1m32.091s 6.101s 9
20 Will Stevens Marussia/Ferrari 1m32.866s 6.876s 11

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