2018 Formula One Mexican Grand Prix – Practice – Friday
Weather: FP1: sunny and dry, 18-21°C air, 24-35°C track; FP2: sunny and dry, 24-26°C air, 46-49°C track
The first day of practice at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez saw a trio of drivers completing the sessions for the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team, with Marcus Ericsson and Antonio Giovinazzi pairing up for the first, and Charles Leclerc taking back his cockpit from Giovinazzi for the second.
During FP1, the drivers headed out onto the famously challenging Mexican circuit, focusing on aerodynamic tests. Both Marcus Ericsson and Antonio Giovinazzi completed the session on hypersoft tyres.
Charles Leclerc and Marcus Ericsson then headed into FP2 with different programmes. While Leclerc tested the supersoft and hypersoft compounds, Ericsson drove on ultrasoft and hypersoft tyres. Due to the unique characteristics of this circuit, the high altitude and low grip posing special challenges, the team will keep working on finding the right car balance ahead of qualifying.
Marcus Ericsson (car number 9):
C37 (Chassis 05/Ferrari)
1st practice: 14th / 1:19.312 min (28 laps) / 2nd practice: 17th / 1:19.322 (41 laps)
“It was a difficult first day here in Mexico. I struggled with the balance of the car, as well as with the tyres, and did not feel great driving. We have a lot of work ahead of us to understand how we can improve for tomorrow. The track is a challenging one, especially with the altitude where we are located, so we will push hard to come back fighting for good results tomorrow.”
Antonio Giovinazzi (car number 36):
C37 (Chassis 02/Ferrari)
1st practice: 12th / 1:19.134 min (25 laps)
“It was a challenging session, as the track was quite dirty and there was not much grip. We ran on the hypersoft compound, so the degradation was high as well, which made it even more tricky. In the end it was still a good session and the lap times were alright. I am happy with the work we have done and my focus remains on working with the team for the remainder of the season.”
Charles Leclerc (car number 16):
C37 (Chassis 02/Ferrari)
2nd practice: 13th / 1:19.024 min (39 laps)
“I completed one practice session today, getting into my car for FP2. It was quite a difficult session, and we have a lot of work to do for tomorrow. I hope that we will be able to make the step we usually do from Friday to Saturday, so that we can improve our performance on this track.”