- Formula 1 had to call off the first practice session for the Las Vegas Grand Prix following the destruction of Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari’s floor by a drain cover.
- In the short first practice session of the Las Vegas Grand Prix, Charles Leclerc set the quickest time.
In the short first practice session of the Las Vegas Grand Prix, which lasted only eight minutes of racing before it was stopped for track maintenance, Charles Leclerc set the quickest time.
Following the destruction of Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari’s floor by a drain cover, Formula 1 had to call off the first practice session for the Las Vegas Grand Prix.
How the first practice session went
It was a cold night, with the track temperature at a mere 19°C, and the Aston Martin driven by Lance Stroll was the first vehicle out on the very slick surface at 8:30 p.m. George Russell said, “Grip is very low.”
With a 1:50.1, Esteban Ocon launched the opening gambit. Charles Leclerc demolished it with a 1:44.0, and the track development was predicted to be enormous.
At 7 minutes into the session, the Ferrari driver came to a halt on the main straight, and Carlos Sainz raised the first yellow flag of the race—actually, a red one.
After just three laps, Sainz exited his damaged SF-23 and his session came to an end as his competitors headed back to the pits. After a protracted halt during which a vehicle was sent out onto the circuit to retrieve Sainz’s Ferrari, Race Control declared that the session would “not be resumed.”
A defective manhole cover caused damage to Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari during the first practice session of the circuit along the altered Strip. In the end, the Spaniard seemed unharmed as the car abandoned the track on the back of a truck.
Due to damage from the manhole cover, Alpine stated that Esteban Ocon’s chassis will also require repairs.
Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen of Haas came in second and third, respectively, behind Leclerc, who had the fastest lap time of 1:40.909.
Teams bringing new parts to Las Vegas
Two of the three teams introducing new parts to the track in Las Vegas are McLaren and Aston Martin, who are separated by 21 points in the race for fourth place in the Constructors’ Championship.
Red Bull’s main challengers at the start of the season were Aston Martin, but since the summer break, McLaren has taken a step back.
So much so that the Woking team, who trailed Aston Martin by 134 points at one point, overtook them in the US Grand Prix before widening the lead in Mexico and Brazil.
At the Interlagos track, Fernando Alonso joined Lando Norris on the podium for Aston Martin’s comeback, but he finished third behind the McLaren driver’s P2.
Aston Martin is now attempting to reclaim fourth position in the Las Vegas Grand Prix by bringing a few track-specific components.
They have a redesigned engine cover and front wing, the latter of which is made to lower the bodywork’s exit area and cut down on airflow through the vehicle, which reduces cooling.
The reason for this is that temperatures in the single digits are predicted for both qualifying and the Grand Prix.
However, McLaren has fresh parts of their own, including a redesigned rear wing and beam. When combined, the additional wings should maximize productivity.
With a new front wing, beam wing, and rear corner for the A523, Alpine is the only other team with new parts.
The McLaren team manager Andrea Stella issued a warning, stating that the fight for fourth place in the standings is far from finished, despite Aston Martin scoring their highest number of points since round three, the Australian Grand Prix, last time out in Brazil.
“We do have to admit that Aston appears to be back to where they were at the beginning of the season,” Stella said.
“We have to be extremely cautious because they have been able to score big points in the last few races, so it is a factor in the championship.”