Lewis Hamilton started his Hungarian Grand Prix weekend as he means to go on by finishing fastest in the first free practice session at the Hungaroring.
Hamilton posted a fastest lap time of 1:25.141 to finish one-tenth of a second clear of Mercedes teammate and title rival Nico Rosberg in a session that was marred by a roll for Force India’s Sergio Perez.
Perez appeared to suffer a failure on his right-rear tire at the exit of turn 11, causing his car to spear into the wall before flipping over its front-right wheel and onto its roll bar.
Thankfully, Perez walked away from the incident unscathed, although he did sound a little shaken over the radio when talking to his team.
After a lengthy delay to clear up the debris and repair the barrier that Perez hit, the session resumed with 15 minutes remaining, but none of the drivers managed to improve their times late on.
Kimi Raikkonen rounded out the top three for Ferrari despite suffering a late front wing failure, bringing out a red flag with three minutes remaining. The Finn finished ahead of Red Bull drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat, whilst Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel slotted into P6.
Carlos Sainz Jr finished seventh for Toro Rosso ahead of Perez, who managed to hold on to P8 in spite of his roll. Valtteri Bottas and Max Verstappen completed the top ten.
Lotus endured a very quiet session after an issue surrounding payments to Pirelli was only resolved in the hour leading up to FP1. Although Pirelli did release tires for Lotus to use, the team spent much of the session stuck in the garage, with reserve driver Jolyon Palmer failing to set a time.