The 16th round of the 2017 FIA Formula One World Championship got off to an abbreviated start as rain impacted the amount of track time teams were able to have Friday at Suzuka Circuit as they began their preparation for Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix.
Both of the 90-minute sessions – FP1 and FP2 – on the 5.807-kilometer (3.608-mile), 18-turn track were affected by rain, with FP2 nearly washed out completely.
Haas F1 Team drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen only participated in FP1, with both drivers finishing among the top-11 in speed.
Grosjean led the way with the ninth-fastest time – a 1:31.032 earned on the 17th of his 22 laps while riding on a set of Pirelli P Zero Red supersoft tires. Magnussen was 11th quick with a 1:31.216 set on his 15th and final lap, with his Haas VF-17 also outfitted with supersofts.
Both drivers cycled through all three tire compounds brought to Suzuka by Pirelli, starting with a solitary installation lap on the White medium tire followed by two stints sampling the Yellow softs before switching to supersofts.
Leading the way in FP1 was Scuderia Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, whose fast lap of 1:29.166 was .211 of a second better than the next quickest driver and championship leader, Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes.
FP2 was a relatively quiet affair due to the rain. Of the 14 drivers who ventured onto the wet track, Hamilton was fastest with a 1:48.719. His time was .799 of a second faster than next best Esteban Ocon of Force India.