Quebec’s Lance Stroll set the eighth time in the only free practice that could be done on the night from Thursday to Friday at the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Las Vegas.
Indeed, a problem with the pit cover forced the organizers to end the opening session after only ten minutes of action, which did not prevent Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) from making a 1-minute pass of 40.909s.
Back on track, Monegasque dominated again, this time with a lap of 1:35.265, 0.517 seconds faster than teammate Carlos Sainz Jr. For his part, Stroll drove in 1:36.496, while the other color bearer of the Aston Martin team, veteran Fernando Alonso, won third place in 1:35.793.
Optimism is therefore felt in anticipation of the qualifications and the race that will take place on the night from Saturday to Sunday. “It’s a fun and fast track, it’s really nice to be in Vegas,” the driver from La Belle Province admitted on his team’s website. Lower temperatures are somewhat of a challenge as the tires will have to adapt to it. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow (Saturday).”
“The peloton is tight, but I think we were very competitive today,” he also thought.
Alonso’s analysis is similar and a fierce battle for places on the Strip is expected.
“With various chicanes and long straights, the track is really interesting,” he said. In the evening, the tires lose a little heat, so this will need to be monitored in areas of sudden braking. It could be a fun event with a few overtaking opportunities.”
Las Vegas hosts F1 for the first time since 1982. Dutchman Max Verstappen (Red Bull) will be looking for his 18th victory this season.