Lewis Hamilton fastest in Austrian GP first practice
Lewis Hamilton headed a Mercedes one-two in first practice at the Austrian Grand Prix.
The world championship leader was 0.127 seconds quicker than team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who in turn was 0.107secs quicker than Red Bull's Max Verstappen.
Hamilton's title rival Sebastian Vettel was fourth quickest in his Ferrari, 0.341secs behind the Briton.
Haas' Romain Grosjean was seventh, behind Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen.
Force India's Esteban Ocon was eighth ahead of another strong performance from Sauber's Charles Leclerc, who is being strongly linked with a move to Ferrari next season. Pierre Gasly's Toro Rosso completed the top 10.
Mercedes have introduced a major aerodynamic upgrade for this race in the hope of making a decisive step forward in their tight fight with Ferrari this year.
Hamilton reclaimed the championship lead with victory in last weekend's French Grand Prix, which was the start of three races in consecutive weekends and five in six before the summer break.
Who will win in Austria?
Choose your top three drivers from the list below
He was aided by Vettel finishing only fifth after causing a crash at the first corner.
Renault, Red Bull's engine supplier, also have upgrades for this race, with a new MGU-K, the part of the hybrid system that recovers energy from the rear axle, and an increased power mode for the final stages of qualifying.
- Austrian Grand Prix: Load up the caravan & get ready for a big party
- Who will top the podium in Austria?
But only the two factory Renault cars of Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz and Stoffel Vandoorne's McLaren had it fitted on Friday.
Red Bull and McLaren on Fernando Alonso's car have chosen not to fit it for this race. All three drivers would have been hit with a grid penalty had they used it because they have already used their permitted allocation of that part for this season.
They will inevitably get a penalty when it is introduced, around the half-season point presumably, but Red Bull did not want to have a grid penalty for their home race on their own track.
It was another difficult session for McLaren. Fernando Alonso was only 17th after spending the session entirely on the hardest 'soft' tyre and doing aerodynamic tests, while team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne was just behind him in 18th, using the middle-grade super-soft tyre.
Vandoorne was hindered by breaking his McLaren's nose over the kerbs when he ran wide at Turn Nine.