The Friday practice session in Azerbaijan began almost exactly as the race in Monaco ended – Sergio Perez led the standings, while Mick Schumacher was over early. In the gallery we show you the first action highlights of the weekend.
The city circuit in Baku has earned its place in the calendar within a few years. The varied track, which consists of a very slow, winding sector and a very fast section with an eternally long straight, has already provided plenty of action at the first Grand Prix events.
Most of the pilots were also looking forward to the entertaining rollercoaster ride on the Caspian Sea. But after the first round of training on Friday (June 10), some would have preferred to leave straight away. The bumps on the public roads, in combination with the extremely tightly tuned F1 racers of the 2022 generation, lead to severe vibrations in the cockpit.
Especially on the full-throttle passage at the end of the lap, the helmets jump wildly back and forth in the cockpit. It's hard to imagine what it's like for the pilots who are strapped into their seat shells and feel every little bump in their bodies. On Sunday they have to survive 51 racing laps in a row on the mogul slope.
Breakdowns at Haas and Williams
But Baku is also a real endurance test for technology. Already in the first few minutes of the opening session, two cars stayed on the track. Mick Schumacher had to park his Haas after just three laps. A water leak forced the Germans to give up early. After the retirement in Monaco, the youngster had to watch his company car being towed away again.
Nicholas Latifi also had a false start. His Williams went on strike after seven practice laps with a smoking rear end. In Baku, the loss of the practice rounds is particularly annoying. You have to build trust in the car and find a good rhythm, especially in the winding and narrow middle sector. In the gallery we show you some action pictures of the first test kilometers.