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French GP: FP1 and nothing unexpected from ROKiT Williams


By Andrew Hooper
June 21 2019

The opening Friday practice session for the 2019 French GP would see the ROKiT Williams Team swap George Russell with Nicholas Latifi, joing Robert Kubica. Both drivers would complete three runs on the soft tyre but at the end of the session the results were not unexpected with both Williams drivers at the bottom of the times. Nicholas would finish ahead of Robert but they were split by the smallest of margins. George Will return for FP2.

 
 ROKiT Williams French GP Friday 1st Practice
 
Latifi
 

Team Summary:
With the start of the first Friday practice for the 2019 French Grand Prix Sainz would set the first time with a 1m:39.095 running on the medium tyre. He would improve with a 1m:35.909 with Leclerc and Vettel behind him. Both Ferrari's were on the soft tyre but their lap times indicated that they were doing data collection. Leclerc would move ahead of Sainz with a 1m:35.822 while Vettel was still third. The only teams yet to come out were those of Mercedes and Williams. Both Williams drivers would start their first runs as Sainz would go fastest with a 1m:35.752 only to see Norris move ahead with a 1m:35.623 both on the medium tyre. Both Williams drivers would complete their opening laps and would end up just 0.016 between them. At the front Bottas would go quickest with a 1m:34.695 running on the soft tyre.

Gasly was now second followed by Norris, Verstappen, Sainz, Leclerc, Vettel, Hulkenberg, Stroll and Perez in tenth. Hamilton was now up in third also on the soft tyre. With forty minutes completed the track would clear as drivers came in to return this extra set of tyres to Pirelli. The Williams drivers were again last in the times. But on their next runs both Williams drivers would make improvements closing the gap to the cars in front. At the front Bottas had set a 1m:33.779 with Gasly still second from Hamilton with twenty five minutes remaining. At the front Hamilton had gone quickest with a 1m:32.738 from Bottas and Leclerc. Verstappen was now fourth followed by Gasly, Norris, Sainz, Ricciardo, Albon and Perez tenth. Vettel would move into fifth.

With the end of the session the Williams drivers were 18th and 19th with Grosjean behind them but he had a water leak issue. It was an uneventful session for the Williams team which produced the expected result. The top ten would be Hamilton from Bottas, Leclerc, Verstappen, Vettel, Gasly, Norris, Sainz, Ricciardo and Albon tenth.

Robert Kubica:
Robert would come out for his first run using the soft tyre. Robert would set a 1m:41.203 but was able to improve with a 1m:39.780. His sixth lap would see a 1m:38.717 to be close to his team-mate. The gap was just 0.016s. Robert would pit after an eight lap run. He would complete a practice pit stop. With thirty five minutes remaining Robert would return and would set a 1m:37.825 using a new set of soft tyres. He was able to improve with a 1m:37.172 to be 18th. Robert would pit after a seven lap run on the soft tyre. Robert would return for a third run again on new soft tyres. Robert would pit after an eight lap run without improving his lap time.

Nicholas Latifi:
Nicholas would follow his team-mate out also on the soft tyre. Nicholas was out running in George Russell's car for this session. Nicholas was able to set a 1m:39.239 after a few slow laps. He would lower his time with a 1m:38.701 to be one place ahead of his team-mate. Nicholas would improve with a 1m:38.499 and would pit after a nine lap run. Nicholas had returned with his team-mate and would set a 1m:37.186 to be behind his team-mate and in 19th. Nicholas would improve with a 1m:37.147 to be just 0.025 ahead of Robert. He would pit after a six lap run. Nicholas would return with ten minutes remaining. Was reported that Nicholas was working on developing the updated front suspension. Nicholas would pit after a seven lap run also not improving his time as the session ended.

 
Kubica
 
Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m32.738s - 21
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m32.807s 0.069s 20
3 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1m33.111s 0.373s 21
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull-Honda 1m33.618s 0.880s 20
5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m33.790s 1.052s 22
6 Pierre Gasly Red Bull-Honda 1m34.091s 1.353s 20
7 Lando Norris McLaren-Renault 1m34.110s 1.372s 23
8 Carlos Sainz Jr. McLaren-Renault 1m34.261s 1.523s 26
9 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1m34.540s 1.802s 18
10 Alexander Albon Toro Rosso-Honda 1m34.804s 2.066s 25
11 Sergio Perez Racing Point-Mercedes 1m34.809s 2.071s 21
12 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m34.810s 2.072s 25
13 Lance Stroll Racing Point-Mercedes 1m35.063s 2.325s 22
14 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Honda 1m35.326s 2.588s 24
15 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1m35.410s 2.672s 19
16 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 1m35.522s 2.784s 22
17 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 1m36.102s 3.364s 22
18 Nicholas Latifi Williams-Mercedes 1m37.147s 4.409s 25
19 Robert Kubica Williams-Mercedes 1m37.172s 4.434s 27
20 Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari 1m37.620s 4.882s 9
 
Latifi
 

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French GP: FP1 and nothing unexpected from ROKiT Williams
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