Mercedes 1-2 in Belgian first practice

Michael Schumacher's special one-off helmet for this weekend

Michael Schumacher's special one-off helmet for this weekend

Michael Schumacher marked his 20 years in Formula 1 by leading first practice for the Belgian Grand Prix.

Wearing a special gold helmet for this weekend, Michael was the first out of the pits, and this proved to be crucial.

Teammate Nico Rosberg was 2nd, as both Mercedes cars were the only drivers who went out on track before a heavy shower.

The rain lasted for the first half an hour of the session, completely soaking the track and forcing the other drivers to take on extreme wet tyres. Over the 90 minutes, drivers opted to switch to intermediates as the track slowly dried out.

Jenson Button was third fastest, over 8 seconds behind Schumacher. Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton were 4th and 5th.

The damp track still caught out several drivers, most notably Bruno Senna and Paul di Resta, both crashing out at Turn 9.

Times from FP1:


 1.  Michael Schumacher  Mercedes              1:54.355            13
 2.  Nico Rosberg        Mercedes              1:54.829  + 0.474   15
 3.  Jenson Button       McLaren-Mercedes      2:02.740  + 8.385   8
 4.  Sebastian Vettel    Red Bull-Renault      2:03.752  + 9.397   10
 5.  Lewis Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes      2:04.301  + 9.946   7
 6.  Adrian Sutil        Force India-Mercedes  2:04.663  + 10.308  18
 7.  Felipe Massa        Ferrari               2:04.728  + 10.373  10
 8.  Rubens Barrichello  Williams-Cosworth     2:05.391  + 11.036  12
 9.  Jaime Alguersuari   Toro Rosso-Ferrari    2:06.583  + 12.228  16
10.  Kamui Kobayashi     Sauber-Ferrari        2:06.886  + 12.531  15
11.  Fernando Alonso     Ferrari               2:07.055  + 12.700  12
12.  Sergio Perez        Sauber-Ferrari        2:07.481  + 13.126  15
13.  Jarno Trulli        Lotus-Renault         2:08.233  + 13.878  14
14.  Sebastien Buemi     Toro Rosso-Ferrari    2:08.239  + 13.884  14
15.  Pastor Maldonado    Williams-Cosworth     2:08.918  + 14.563  10
16.  Mark Webber         Red Bull-Renault      2:09.792  + 15.437  8
17.  Timo Glock          Virgin-Cosworth       2:12.278  + 17.923  13
18.  Tonio Liuzzi        HRT-Cosworth          2:12.389  + 18.034  10
19.  Jerome D'Ambrosio   Virgin-Cosworth       2:12.772  + 18.417  13
20.  Paul di Resta       Force India-Mercedes  2:13.058  + 18.703  8
21.  Karun Chandhok      Lotus-Renault         2:13.090  + 18.735  11
22.  Vitaly Petrov       Renault               2:13.601  + 19.246  10
23.  Bruno Senna         Renault               2:14.340  + 19.985  7
24.  Daniel Ricciardo    HRT-Cosworth          2:14.933  + 20.578  11
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