Hamilton takes first in first practice at first Korean Grand Prix

Friday, October 22, 2010

YEONGAM - Briton Lewis Hamilton turned in the best time Friday in the first practice session on South Korea’s brand-new Formula One track.

The McLaren-Mercedes driver sped around the 5.62-kilometre course, which was finished only two weeks ago, in one minute, 40.887 seconds, a mere 0.081 seconds ahead of Pole Robert Kubica in his Renault.

The German Mercedes pilot Nico Rosberg finished third at 1:41.152, ahead of fourth-placed Sebastian Vettel in a Red Bull and Hamilton’s teammate Jenson Button in fifth.

Mark Webber, who was leading the season standings ahead of the first Korean Grand Prix, had to settle for seventh behind Michael Schumacher.

In the first test of the new track in Yeongam, 400 kilometres south of Seoul, the worst time turned in by the five world champion candidates came from Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who finished in 15th place with a time of 1:43.928

He is now in second place in the standings, 14 points behind Webber, who sits on 220.

Vettel stands at third with 206 points, followed by Hamilton (192) and the defending world champion, Button (189).

Including Sunday’s race on the Korean International Circuit, there are three races of the season remaining.

A second practice session is to follow Friday ahead of a third practice and qualifying Saturday and Sunday’s showdown.

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