Event: Italian Grand Prix
Track: Monza Circuit

Weather: dry  25°C
Tarmac: dry  36°C
Humidity : 53%
Wind : 1.0 km/h S
Pressure: 998 mbar

Verstappen Tops First Practice Session at 2023 Italian F1 GP

The first practice session for the 2023 Italian Formula 1 Grand Prix took place today at the historic Monza circuit. After a series of wet sessions in previous races, the teams finally enjoyed dry conditions, allowing them to gather valuable data and test various upgrades.

The weather outlook was promising, with a 0% chance of rain during the session. This was a relief for the teams, as uninterrupted running was crucial for testing upgrades and collecting data for the upcoming races, including thoughts of the 2024 season.

The session saw Max Verstappen, the man of the moment, continuing his impressive form. He equaled Sebastian Vettel's record of nine consecutive wins in the previous race and now aims to set a new record with a remarkable 10th consecutive victory. Verstappen's performance has been a combination of impeccable race craft, car reliability, strategic pit stops, and managing various weather conditions.

In other news, McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo was absent from the cockpit due to a hand injury, allowing Liam Lawson to take his place at AlphaTauri for this session. This weekend also brought major announcements from Mercedes regarding their driver lineup for 2024 and 2025. Lewis Hamilton confirmed his stay with the team for at least two more seasons, and he will be joined by George Russell. This solidifies Mercedes' lineup and keeps Hamilton in the sport beyond his 40th birthday.

As the session began, Lando Norris from McLaren hit the track with notable aero rakes on his car, indicating the team's focus on aerodynamic testing. The tire choice for this weekend was on the softer end of the spectrum compared to the previous race in Zandvoort, with Pirelli supplying the C3, C4, and C5 rubber compounds.

Monza's unique characteristics demand a low downforce setup, favouring high speeds on the straights. However, finding the right balance is crucial to maintain cornering performance. Pierre Gasly's and Daniel Ricciardo's past successes here prove the unpredictability of the Italian circuit.

The session also reintroduced the 'Alternative Tyre Allocation' system, where drivers must use different tire compounds in each qualifying session. Ferrari showcased a tweaked livery with accents of yellow, while Alfa Romeo unveiled a patriotic livery.

During the session, some drivers faced technical challenges. Both Alfa Romeo drivers experienced issues, with Zhou and Bottas encountering problems at the end of the pit lane. Verstappen dominated the timing sheets with a fast lap on hard tires, closely followed by Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez.

Halfway the session the top 10 order was: 1. Max Verstappen - 1:22.657 (H),2. Sergio Pérez +0.297 (H), 3. Charles Leclerc +0.309 (H), 4. Carlos Sainz +0.329 (H), 5. Fernando Alonso +0.577 (M) 6. Lando Norris +0.584 (S), 7. Lewis Hamilton +0.612 (H), 8. Oscar Piastri +0.789 (S), 9. George Russell +0.828 (H) & 10. Alex Albon +1.240 (S).

Teams experimented with different strategies, and the drivers focused on gathering data for setup adjustments and understanding tire behavior. Verstappen remained on top throughout the session, showcasing Red Bull's potential for the weekend. The session highlighted the teams' adaptation to the Alternative Tyre Allocation and their preparation for the unique challenges of Monza's high-speed layout.

The first practice session concluded with Verstappen leading the pack, closely followed by Sainz and Perez. As teams analyze the data gathered, they prepare for the second practice session scheduled for later in the day. The pecking order appears unpredictable, setting the stage for an exciting weekend of racing action at the 2023 Italian F1 Grand Prix.

The quickest lap time of last year's FP1 was a 1:22.416 min, set by Lewis Hamilton in the Ferrari F1-75 on soft tyres.

FP1 Times Table 2023 Italian GP

P No Driver Team Time 1st Gap Laps Tyres
1 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:22,657 30 ⚪H
2 55 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:22,703 +0,046s 27 ⚪H
3 11 Sergio Pérez Red Bull 1:22,834 +0,177s 29 ⚪H
4 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:22,966 +0,309s 21 ⚪H
5 63 George Russell Mercedes 1:23,189 +0,532s 27 🟡M
6 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:23,214 +0,557s 23 🔴S
7 4 Lando Norris McLaren 1:23,241 +0,584s 21 ⚪H
8 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:23,269 +0,612s 25 🔴S
9 22 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:23,271 +0,614s 22 🔴S
10 23 Alex Albon Williams 1:23,444 +0,787s 17 🔴S
11 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren 1:23,446 +0,789s 23 🔴S
12 2 Logan Sargeant Williams 1:23,661 +1,004s 20 🔴S
13 40 Liam Lawson AlphaTauri 1:23,833 +1,176s 28 🔴S
14 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine 1:23,931 +1,274s 25 🔴S
15 77 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1:23,952 +1,295s 16 🔴S
16 27 Nico Hülkenberg Haas 1:24,067 +1,410s 22 🟡M
17 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1:24,090 +1,433s 15 🔴S
18 34 Felipe Drugovich Aston Martin 1:24,140 +1,483s 23 🟡M
19 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:24,217 +1,560s 23 🟡M
20 24 Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo 1:24,232 +1,575s 16 🔴S

✅ Don't forget to check out our 2023 Italian F1 Grand Prix preview info.

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4 F1 Fan comments on “First Free Practice Results 2023 Italian F1 Grand Prix

    • Nobodysperfect

      Yes, must be because of that new 'Alternative Tyre Allocation' system during quali. They again have to qualify on hards in Q1, mediums in Q2 and softs for Q3 again. So they want to be sure they get into Q2 on the hards i guess, that's why they put in so much laps.


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