Red Bull drivers Sergio Pérez and Max Verstappen set exactly the same time in Free Practice 1 of the Formula 1 Mexico City Grand Prix.
As Checo Pérez was the first to do so, he took position 3, while Max was fourth in a session dominated by Ferrari with Carlos Sainz clocking 1:20.707 and Charles Leclerc just 46 thousandths away… but the Red Bulls are very close to, even 120 thousand Spanish.
So when someone tells the Red Bull engineers not to give their drivers the same weapons, they could show the times of Verstappen and Pérez in FP1. Both clocked 1:20.827, exactly.
In the first section, all cars started on hard tyres, with Max Verstappen fastest in the first 20 minutes with a time of 1:22.291 to 1:22.673 for Checo Pérez who was second.
Charles Leclerc didn’t hit the track until 25 minutes had passed, fitted the softs and started the session with a 1m20.753s.
Verstappen had a scare on his first lap on the soft and went through turn eight, tried to straighten and went into turn nine, then managed to miss the wall.
Another to suffer was Haas, when rookie driver Pietro Fittipaldi saw his car was smoking and had to be asked, almost begged, over the radio to stop where he could to avoid further damage. That raised a red flag.
Another red flag flew when Liam Lawson had the same thing happen to Fittipaldi, but at the entrance to the Foro Sol, passing turn 12 called “Adrián Fernández”.
Again, five teams tested rookie drivers to comply with the regulation which states that in 2022 all teams must go up to two Free Practice 1 drivers other than those they have as rookies.
New Zealander Liam Lawson on AlphaTaura with Yuki Tsunoda’s car; American Logan Sergeant with Williams in place of Alex Albon, who will be his teammate in 2023.
Also Brazilian and grandson of Emerson Fittipaldi, Pietro Fittipaldi with Haas in place of Kevin Magnussen; Nick de Vries in Mercedes in George Russell’s car and Australian Jack Doohan in Alpine instead of Esteban Ocon.