The first day of practice at the Miami International Autodrome delivered mixed fortunes for Scuderia Ferrari. On the new track that runs around the Hard Rock Stadium, the F1-75 proved to be competitive, however, Carlos Sainz had to miss out on a good part of the second session, after he went off the track. The Spaniard therefore had less time to familiarise himself with a track that appears to be particularly tricky, with the walls that evoke its street circuit nature and the tarmac that was both dirty and abrasive on tyres. Furthermore conditions in the cockpit were stifling with track temperature around 50 degrees, the air at 34 and very humid. The Scuderia pair managed to complete 81 laps, 51 in the first session, 30 in the second.
FP1. Charles and Carlos began the inaugural session on Medium tyres, doing 16 and 15 laps respectively and setting best times of 1’32”555 and 1’32”443. After a red flag brought out when Valtteri Bottas went off the track, the Ferrari duo went back out to evaluate the car’s behaviour on Soft tyres. However, Carlos then switched back to Mediums, following a puncture sustained after a harmless spin. Despite this, the Spaniard managed to improve getting down to 1’32”114 followed by a 1’31”528, which put him sixth fastest as well as being the quickest lap of the session on Medium tyres. Leclerc posted the outright quickest time of the hour in 1’31”098 on the Softs. Between them, they completed 51 laps: 26 for Charles and 25 for Carlos.
FP2. Charles and Carlos began the second hour once again running the Medium tyre as they continued to familiarise themselves with the track and begun work on fine tuning the set-up of the F1-75. On this compound they posted times of 1’31”131 and 1’30”964 respectively, which remained the benchmark on this compound, even though Carlos’ day ended with a spin into the barriers at turns 14-15. The car was damaged and the session was red flagged. When it restarted, Charles went out on Soft tyres, stopping the clocks in 1’30”044, the second fastest time. Towards the end of the session, after it had been stopped again, this time when Nicholas Latifi stopped, the Monegasque did a few laps with a heavier fuel load and Medium tyres. He completed 21 laps, while Sainz did nine.
Programme. Qualifying takes place tomorrow at 16 (22 CET), preceded by the final hour of free practice at 13 (19 CET).