Qatar GP: Max Verstappen controls Practice One as F1 awaits stewards verdict on Lewis Hamilton clash

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Qatar GP: Max Verstappen controls Practice One as F1 awaits stewards verdict on Lewis Hamilton clash

Last Updated: 19/11/21 11:45am

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2009 world champion Jenson Button delivers his verdict on the incident between title rivals Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton.

2009 world champion Jenson Button delivers his verdict on the incident between title rivals Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton.

Max Verstappen put the ongoing off-track controversy behind him to storm clear of the field on F1’s Qatar debut, much faster than the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas and his title rival Lewis Hamilton in first practice.

The F1 world is waiting with bated breath on whether Verstappen, the championship leader by 14 points, will face an investigation from the stewards on his feisty defense from Hamilton at the Sao Paulo GP; with a verdict that was previously expected on Thursday now set for Friday.

Brushing that aside, Verstappen was in majestic form in the Red Bull on the first-ever F1 session around a dusty Losail International Circuit – enjoying a seamless start to his weekend on the track compared to Hamilton.

Verstappen posted a 1:23.723 to top the timesheets, 0.4s ahead of AlphaTauri’s Gasly and Bottas in the lead Mercedes, while Hamilton was seven-tenths of a second behind the Dutchman and had issues during the opening hour of action.

Hamilton first of a lack of power, and then had to pit with a car issue after running too wide over the curbs of a demanding track, which has been a popular mainstay on the MotoGP calendar.

More to follow.

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