• Hungarian Grand Prix - FP1

Red Bulls flex muscles around Hungaroring

ESPNF1 Staff
July 30, 2010
Red Bull's flexi wing looks to have given them a significant advantage © Sutton Images

Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber easily topped the timesheets during the first free practice session for the Hungarian Grand Prix, as Red Bull's new flexi-wing appeared to provide a significant advantage at the high-downforce Hungaroring.

Vettel clocked a quickest time of 1:20.976 to head the charts from his team-mate, as third placed Robert Kubica was ominously over a second slower in the Renault. McLaren's Jenson Button finished the session fourth fastest but team-mate Lewis Hamilton could only manage a handful of laps as mechanics worked on a problem with the front end of his car.

The forecasted rain stayed away as blue skies and sunshine greeted the teams right from the start. Adrian Sutil, who confessed on Thursday that his F1 future remains 'open', set the early benchmark with a 1:26.143 as Force India opted to run its own blown diffuser on his car.

The front runners bided their time until just over half an hour into the session when the Red Bulls of Webber and Vettel immediately lowered the target time by four seconds. The pair then traded fastest laps as the times began to tumble with more rubber going down on the warming circuit.

With many eyes on Red Bull's new flexi-wing, BBC commentator Anthony Davidson said he noticed a significant difference watching Vettel and Webber's cars at high speed compared to other teams and it certainly seemed to be working.

Ferrari, which reported it had yet to decide whether to run its own version, seemed not to be using the wing in the opening session and Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa ended the session seventh and 12th respectively.

However, all times are subject to the fuel loads the teams were running and were all set on the prime tyres, with the softer compound set to be used in the afternoon. Nevertheless, some trends from recent races were still obvious, such as Rubens Barrichello continuing his fine form in the Williams and Pedro de la Rosa exhibiting the steady progress of the Sauber

Nico Rosberg was again ahead of Mercedes team-mate Michael Schumacher, although they were split by just 0.015 of a second. At the very bottom of the timesheets, HRT's Sakon Yamamoto was again over a second off Bruno Senna in the same car.