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Ferrari ace Sebastian Vettel made top fastest lap-time in the Friday opening practice session, a tenth ahead of world champion Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull young speedy Max Verstappen.

Kimi Raikkonen, the 2012 winner in Abu Dhabi, was fourth in his Ferrari, ahead of the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas – both are two tenths back ahead of Force India of Sergio Perez.

McLaren-Honda drivers Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne set seventh and eighth fastest respectively, while Williams veteran Felipe Massa and Daniel Ricciardo completed the top 10.

The final FP1 session of the year saw the ‘Halo’ cockpit protection seems on a number of cars ahead of its introduction for the 2018 season, with Bottas and Haas’ Antonio Giovinazzi among the drivers testing it.

Conditions in the summer sun proved treacherous for some, with Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg and the Haas of Romain Grosjean among those to spin.

Antonio Giovinazzi was one of two rookie drivers to feature in the session, with Force India running Mercedes youngster George Russell in place of Esteban Ocon. Russell ended the session 11th overall, while Giovinazzi took P18.


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