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Leclerc leads opening French GP practice

Charles Leclerc at the French GP. Credits: @ScuderiaFerrari (Twitter).

Charles Leclerc has topped the timesheets of the first free practice session of the French Grand Prix.

Formula 1’s racing action at the Circuit Paul Ricard this weekend began with FP1 on Friday afternoon.

Nyck de Vries replaced Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes, while Robert Kubica was behind the wheel of Valtteri Bottas’ Alfa Romeo car.

The majority of the field began practice programs. Soft and Medium tires were the preferred choice.

Lando Norris reported that he had a “not right” feeling of the throttle pedal. However, the McLaren driver stayed at the race track. At the same time, Pierre Gasly encountered engine issues and had to go to the pits. The problem seemed to have been fixed and the Frenchman was at the race track shortly after.

Sergio Perez spun between turns 3 and 4. The Red Bull driver avoided the barriers and rejoined the track moments later. However, his set of Soft tires got damaged.

Charles Leclerc set the quickest lap time of the session – 1:33.930. Max Verstappen was second, less than a tenth away from the Monegasque. Carlos Sainz, who had been given a 10-place grid penalty for the race, completed the top 3.

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