Lewis Hamilton has laid down his marker the Saudi Arabian GP, as he came out all guns blazing in the first free practice session on Friday evening. The Briton dominated with the soft tyres, whereas, it was Max Verstappen who looked a better driver on hard compound tyres.
Lewis Hamilton topped the FP1 chart, ahead of Max Verstappen who came in second. Valtteri Bottas came in third to make a very predictable top three. Hamilton was just 0.056s faster than Max Verstappen in the first session which leaves plenty of room for improvement for the Dutchman.
Saudi Arabian GP is the penultimate race of the season, with the final one taking place in Abu Dhabi next weekend. Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton are just separated by a total of 8 points, with the former having the lead over his rival.
Max Verstappen finishes P2, Bottas P3 in FP1
Lewis Hamilton took 21 full laps of the Jeddah circuit, and started finding his groove in the latter stages of the session. Meanwhile, Max Verstappen managed 23 laps, and was one of the first drivers to start his session.
Valtteri Bottas found himself 0.224 seconds behind his Mercedes teammate, Lewis Hamilton after completing 24 laps. Pierre Gasly continued his fine form this season, as he came in fourth. Antonio Giovinazzi was the surprise name on the list, as he came back in fifth ahead of the two Ferrari drivers.
The second free practice session of the day will be held later in the evening, as Max Verstappen would look to finish above Lewis Hamilton in the standings. Sergio Perez looked way off the pace for Red Bull on Friday evening, as he could only finish 11th, despite finishing 27 laps.