Hamilton was fastest in both FP1 and FP2, ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc respectively.
Turkish Grand Prix FP1 results: Hamilton fastest from Verstappen
What happened in Free Practice 1?
Due to his 10-place engine-change grid penalty, Hamilton focused on soft-tyre running, working his way down to 1m24.511s as the track rubbered-in. Hamilton then put on a fresh set of softs and produced 1m24.250 and then, after another spell in the pits, he set the session-best 1m24.178s.
On his soft-tyred run, Verstappen struggled with his Red Bull’s balance – reporting “no front end” and suggested it was the tyres – and was almost half a second down on 1m24.603s. Leclerc was third, just 0.051s down on Verstappen and clearly revelling in his fresh power unit.
Valtteri Bottas was fourth in the second Mercedes, 0.6s off his teammate’s pace, ahead of Carlos Sainz (who will also take an engine change penalty on Sunday) and Esteban Ocon (Alpine), who remarkably set his 1m24.909s on hards after blowing his soft-tyre run at Turn 9.
McLaren’s Lando Norris was seventh from Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri), Fernando Alonso (Alpine) and Sergio Perez (Red Bull).
Turkish Grand Prix FP2 results: Hamilton fastest from Leclerc
What happened in Free Practice 2?
In FP2, Leclerc set the medium-tyre pace, beating Hamilton’s morning time with 1m24.102s, as Lewis complained his medium-compound fronts were “not working” – he was 0.099s slower after the first runs.
Teams switched to soft-tyre running just before half distance, with Hamilton setting the pace at 1m23.840s. Verstappen’s struggles continued and he only lapped within nine-tenths of his title rival.
Hamilton made a marginal improvement on his second lap, finding pace in the middle sector, lowering his P1 time to 1m23.804s. Leclerc had a big moment on his time attack on softs at Turn 9 but improved at his second attempt to 1m23.970s, 0.166s off Hamilton’s best.
Bottas was fourth tenths off the pace in third, ahead of Perez, Verstappen, Norris and Alonso. Ocon was eighth (but suffered an issue that prevented him from selecting first gear for his practice start at the end of the session), Gasly and Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi.
An understeer-plagued Gasly spun at Turn 6, while Nicholas Latifi rotated his Williams at Turn 9 early on, and again near the end, but he recovered to outpace teammate George Russell. Nikita Mazepin suffered a high-speed half-spin at Turn 8 towards the end of the session.