Valtteri Bottas lead the Mexican GP’s first free practice session on Friday staying ahead of his F1 teammate Lewis Hamilton by 0.466s, and followed by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen a further tenth behind in third.
Running on Super softs, Bottas set the early pace clocking a 1m19.614s, but was quickly overtaken by Verstappen who was on softs.
Hamilton climbed up to the top for short period and then was demoted by Sebastian Vettel with a 1m18.824s on the super softs.
Bottas changed into ultrasofts and set his quickest lap at 1m17.824s while Hamilton was 0.789s off his Finnish teammate in his first run on the ultrasofts.
Ferrari and Red Bull choose not to bring out their ultrasofts and finished the rest of the session on softs or super softs.
Daniel Ricciardo was the fourth fastest, 0.026s behind teammate Verstappen, followed by Vettel at fifth.
Kimi Räikkönen came in sixth, 1.184s slower than the pace setter with home town hero Sergio Perez behind him.
Alfonso Celis Jr was racing in Esteban Ocon’s car for FP1 and suffered a crash at the final corner leading to a red flag. The crash broke Celis’s rear wing.
Fernando Alonso came in eighth and will be starting from the back of the grid with a 20 place penalty for engine component change. He was followed by Felipe Massa and Nico Hulkenberg completing the top 10.
Kevin Magnussen was stuck in the garage for most of the free practice as his car suffered a water leak. Magnussen headed out a few minutes before closing time and came in 13th.
Pascal Wehrlein ran ahead of both the Toro Rosso drivers and came 14th. Charles Leclerc, filling in for Marcus Ericsson was half a second behind the Mercedes protégé.
Brendon Hartley did not get a lot of practice as his car stopped out on the track due to an engine problem. Although Hartley got the car restarted, he could not race any further.
Stoffel Vandoorne could not set a lap time as Honda identified a potential problem in his engine data. This was after he got an entirely new engine package. Due to the issue, Honda elected to put his old engine back on so the German could race without any penalties while the engine maker investigates.