Monaco GP Practice One: Lewis Hamilton ahead of Max Verstappen
Hamilton 0.059s ahead of Verstappen, top three split by less than a tenth; Ferrari 0.3s off the pace; Both Haas drivers black flagged, McLaren and Racing Point struggle; Watch P2 live on Sky F1 at 2pm
By Matt Morlidge
Last Updated: 23/05/19 3:46pm
Lewis Hamilton laid down his marker at the Monaco GP by topping the Practice One timesheets, with Max Verstappen only just behind for Red Bull.
Hamilton, a two-time winner around F1's most iconic street circuit, set the pace with a 1:12.106 but Verstappen, who has insisted that Mercedes are the Monte Carlo favourites, finished the opening session just 0.059s behind.
Valtteri Bottas rounded off a closely-matched top three, also within a tenth of a second of his Mercedes team-mate.
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"It does look like Max is the only one who can be the cat among those Mercedes pigeons," said Sky F1's Karun Chandhok.
Ferrari, however, still have work to do in the Principality.
Home favourite Charles Leclerc was three tenths off the pace in fourth, while Sebastian Vettel was 0.7s adrift for a team who have been struggling with their chassis, particularly in slow corners - which there are many of in Monaco.
"It's really a flip-flop from what we've seen in from previous years. Two years ago Ferrari were the team to beat here," added Chandhok.
"It's amazing how a change of regulation has just turned it all on its head. Suddenly Mercedes are the team to beat in the slow corners."
Pierre Gasly will also be disappointed with his start to the weekend given his Red Bull team-mate's pace. The Frenchman was a second slower than Hamilton and Verstappen in sixth.
Haas black flagged, McLaren and Racing Point struggle
There was a rare double black flag in first practice after Haas suffered with telemetry issues - the team were forced to call both Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean back to the pits early on in the session.
That certainly set their drivers back, but they still managed to finish in the top-10 with Kevin Magnussen eighth, just behind Nico Hulkenberg who finished 'best of the rest' for Renault.
Daniel Ricciardo, last year's Monaco winner, was 11th in the sister yellow car.
McLaren ran into problems with Lando Norris, who finished 15th, one of many drivers to run wide into the narrow run-off areas, while Carlos Sainz only got out on track with 10 minutes remaining and propped up the timesheets.
Racing Point also disappointed, with Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll 16th and 19th - the latter four seconds off the pace and behind both Williams drivers.
Monaco GP Practice One Timesheet
|1) Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1:12.106|
|2) Max Verstappen||Red Bull||+0.059|
|3) Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||+0.072|
|4) Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||+0.361|
|5) Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||+0.717|
|6) Pierre Gasly||Red Bull||+1.064|
|7) Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||+1.121|
|8) Kevin Magnussen||Haas||+1.126|
|9) Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo||+1.257|
|10) Romain Grosjean||Haas||+1.273|
|11) Daniel Ricciardo||Renault||+1.307|
|12) Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo||+1.331|
|13) Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||+1.625|
|14) Alexander Albon||Toro Rosso||+1.721|
|15) Lando Norris||McLaren||+2.172|
|16) Sergio Perez||Racing Point||+2.460|
|17) George Russell||Williams||+3.009|
|18) Robert Kubica||Williams||+3.408|
|19) Lance Stroll||Racing Point||+4.029|
|20) Carlos Sainz||McLaren||+48.564|
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