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LIVE COMMENTARY: 2009 HUNGARIAN GRAND PRIX - FRIDAY MORNING PRACTICE
   GO TO LIVE INDEX ALL TIMES GMT  
As it happened: Friday Morning Practice
By Geoff Creighton and Emlyn Hughes
The live commentary has ended. No further updates will be posted.
07:45 Hello everyone and welcome to AUTOSPORT Live for round ten of the 2009 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.

The teams have taken the long road trip across Europe for the next venue on the calendar - and the last before a lengthy four-week F1 summer break.

Close to the beautiful city of Budapest, the drivers are ready to tackle the 4.381 km Hungaroring circuit for the 2009 Hungarian Grand Prix.

07:46 Today, we will guide you through the opening practice sessions with minute-by-minute commentary as the teams and drivers begin their build-up to the race.

First practice will begin shortly, with commentary ending 15 minutes after the session has concluded.

Later, at 11:45 GMT, we will return for live coverage of the second practice session. AUTOSPORT Live will end the day with a weekend weather forecast, on the Hungarian Grand Prix weather page.

Brawn07:47 The pursuit of Jenson Button and his Brawn GP team is well and truly on in more ways than one, as the sport travels to the only venue in eastern Europe.

Red Bull Racing has emerged from two fantastic race weekends at the recent British and German grands prix as the main threat in both championships to Ross Brawn's outfit, thanks to victories for both Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber.

Button still leads the drivers standings with a solid 68 points, but Vettel is beginning to make inroads and comes to Budapest 21 points behind the Briton, with his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber lying third on 45.5 points and still a contender in the title chase - providing he can keep his Germany form going. Rubens Barrichello is fourth in the table on 44 points, with the rest some way behind the top four.

The story is repeated in the constructors' championship, as Brawn and Red Bull continue to fight for race wins between them. Brawn has the upper hand with a sensational haul of 112 points from the first nine races, but the Austrian-owned Red Bull squad is closing down the gap race by race, and now lie just under 20 points behind their rivals.

As a result of the superb performances by the top two teams this year, the rest are struggling in the standings and can forget any aspirations to win the series this year. Toyota are best of the rest in third on 34.5 points, with Ferrari just 1.5 points further back in fifth.

07:49 AUTOSPORT forum members are invited to join the fun throughout the weekend, offering thoughts and opinions as the event unfolds.

• How long will it take this morning before the racing line cleans up and the excess dust is lifted up by the cars?

• Who will come out on top in this first practice session? Will the Red Bull v Brawn battle dominate proceedings or will the chasing pack make their presence felt early on?

• How will Jaime Alguersuari fare in his first taste of Formula 1 competition?

Tell everyone what you think.

Click the SHOW LIVE FORUM link in the red bar at the bottom of your browser window if you'd like to join the debate.

Alguersuari07:51 History will be made this weekend at the Hungaroring, when Spaniard Jaime Alguersuari takes to the track for his Formula 1 debut. His opportunity at Toro Rosso comes at the expense of Sebastien Bourdais, who was dropped by the team last week following a string of disappointing results.

So who is Jaime Alguersuari, and why has he been the talk of the town in the run-up to the Hungarian Grand Prix?

The story begins in 2003 when a then 13-year-old Alguersuari brought his name to the fore with his karting career in Spain. He quickly became established as a youngster to watch by winning the ICA Junior Champions International Cup that year, and then followed that up by retaining the title in 2004 - as well as becoming Spanish Junior Champion.

In 2005 Alguersuari moved up to senior ICA karting and once again became Spanish Champion, as well as finishing runner-up in the FIA Cup Asia Pacific, and was ready for a crack at single-seaters. He joined the Red Bull Junior programme later that season and took part in several Formula Junior races in Italy - winning two of them and finishing third in the standings.

Throughout 2006 and 2007, Alguersuari's Formula Renault education continued and he racked up further victories - mainly in Italy, but by now he was also racing Formula Renault across Europe.

The next move up the ladder was be to Formula 3. In 2008 the impressive Spaniard notched up three wins in his national series, and a further five race victories in the highly-regarded British Formula 3 championship for Carlin Motorsport, where he faced stiff competition from team-mates Oliver Turvey and Brendon Hartley. Undaunted, Alguersuari saw off their challenges and claimed the F3 title.

This year, the 19-year-old moved up another class to the Formula Renault 3.5 series - again with Carlin Motorsport. He is lying eighth in the championship currently, but focus on that will drift slightly as he takes up the opportunity of a lifetime with Toro Rosso this weekend.

07:52 The weather is fantastic at the circuit this morning, with plenty of blue sky and strong sunshine.

Conditions are expected to remain like this for much of the day. Later some cloud cover will move into the area from the west, but not before the air temperature has soared to 32 degrees Celsius.

Action07:53 Each year, at the height of the European summer, the Formula 1 circus travels to Hungary, to the one circuit that is generally derided by motor racing enthusiasts as the 'Hunga-boring'.

Historically the Hungaroring has rarely produced spectacular racing, thanks to its twisty nature, with very little opportunity to overtake, but this year the prospects for the race weekend are truly fantastic, and on paper we could see one of the most closely-fought races for a long time.

Championship leaders Brawn and Jenson Button are coming under serious threat from all angles. Red Bull has made huge strides thanks to a brilliant aero package update from Adrian Newey and his team, but the challenge certainly doesn't end there.

Ferrari is moving forward consistently, and just two weeks ago at the Nurburgring Felipe Massa netted the Scuderia's first podium of the season.

McLaren is on the brink of an amazing turnaround in its fortunes, as witnessed by the blinding speed shown by Lewis Hamilton at the German round. Added to its recent aerodynamic update is the fact that the MP4-24 was quick during practice at Monte Carlo (until Hamilton's unfortunate incident at the Mirabeau in qualifying) - the makings of a serious challenge near the front on this tight circuit.

Williams is also on the move. Nico Rosberg has finished fourth in the last two grands prix, and after the Nurburgring race he was extremely positive about the chances of scoring a podium very soon in a car that has been fast at every type of circuit.

The group could also be joined by Renault this weekend - especially in the hands of double world champion Fernando Alonso. The team has made significant progress recently thanks to its own aerodynamic update on the R29 and, although the fruits of that haven't shown themselves in results just yet, Alonso did set the fastest lap in clear air at the Nurburgring.

Brawn will need eyes everywhere this weekend, as the pack close in on its position as 'top dog' in the sport, and it will be fascinating to see how the event plays out.

This will be anything but Hunga-boring ...

07:55 Practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix gets underway in five minutes.

07:57 All eyes are on the man of the moment, Jaime Alguersuari. The 19-year-old is strapped into the Toro Rosso and his ready for his first experience in the Hungarian heat.

07:58 Points leader Jenson Button chats with his Brawn race engineer Andrew Shovelin, as he makes sure his helmet is in position. He moves and clambers aboard the BGP 001.

07:59 The track temperature is already up to 30 Celsius, which is a welcome sight after a couple of chilly grands prix.

There is quite a strong breeze this morning.

0 min: The practice session is underway.

0 min: Sebastian Vettel is the first driver on track this morning, quickly followed by Sebastien Buemi in the Toro Rosso.

1 min: Jaime Alguersuari is next on track and his Formula 1 initiation begins.

3 min: The installation laps continue with Felipe Massa out in the Ferrari for a slow tour of the dirty circuit.

3 min: More than half the field have emerged from the pits for the standard installation lap - the first lap of the weekend. The drivers will come out, and check the systems on their car, to make sure everything functions properly.

They will pit at the end of this first lap and then the engineers in the pits can begin the data download and ensure that all the numbers match up, so that the car can be readied for more serious action later.

4 min: Finns Raikkonen and Kovalainen are on track for their first laps of the weekend.

4 min: Jenson Button is on track at the moment, on his checking lap.

5 min: Jaime Alguersuari reports on the Toro Rosso team radio to his race engineer that it is so far, so good. The controls are functioning fine and he was able to move through the gearbox without any problems.

5 min: Toro Rosso finally gets some upgraded parts this weekend, spicing up the battle in the second half of the field. The STR4 features a double-decker diffuser for the first time and the same major overhaul that sister squad, Red Bull Racing, introduced at Silverstone.

7 min: Jarno Trulli is the lone ranger on the circuit at the present time. The Italian rounds the penultimate corner and heads for the pits at the end of his installation lap.

8 min: Lewis Hamilton is on track for the first time.

McLaren has confirmed it will use KERS at every race for the rest of the season, with the power boost set to be a major factor for the start on Sunday. The team will also have the heavily-revised aerodynamic package, which worked well for Hamilton in Germany, on both cars this weekend.

8 min: BMW Sauber is the only team so far this morning to send its drivers out for two laps. This gives both Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica slightly more time to ensure everything is working on the F1.09 today.

10 min: Rubens Barrichello is the 18th driver to join the track this morning. Like the BMW drivers, he is also going round for two laps to warm his Brawn up.

The Brazilian will be hoping for a quiet and fruitful weekend, following some heat-of-the-moment comments he made immediately after the German Grand Prix.

11 min: Jaime Alguersuari comes out for the second time in the Toro Rosso, and he completes a lap and starts a timed lap.

12 min: Timo Glock is the only driver yet to take to the track this morning, as Alguersuari completes his first timed lap in Formula 1. He posts a 1m34.716s.

12 min: BMW Sauber is running a new front wing in Hungary this weekend, along with some experimental parts this morning, but Nick Heidfeld told AUTOSPORT his next big hope for a pace improvement is a major package due for the Singapore Grand Prix in late September.

15 min: Alguersuari predictably improves to a 1m31.457s on his second flying lap. The Spaniard should slowly and steadily improve over the next few laps as he finds his feet.

15 min: Kimi Raikkonen is now climbing back into his Ferrari after the mechanics have been busily working in the cockpit of the F60 since Kimi concluded his installation lap.

16 min: Alguersuari now laps the Hungaroring in under 90 seconds as he comes through in 1m29.313s on his third flying lap. His Toro Rosso team-mate Sebastien Buemi is also out there and coming round to complete his first timed lap of the weekend.

17 min: While Alguersuari gets his first taste of Formula 1, most of the drivers are very relaxed in the pits. This track is notoriously dirty and slippery at this early stage in the weekend and most will be waiting for the track conditions to improve.

18 min: Buemi posts 1m28.550s to go quickest ahead of Alguersuari, who improved to a 1m29.240s on his fourth flyer.

19 min: Lewis Hamilton is back on track to begin his work in the McLaren.

19 min: Fifth lap and the fifth improved timed from Alguersuari as he posts 1m27.953s to briefly take over the top spot.

Buemi soon tops that with 1m26.727s.

20 min: Brawn has some major upgrades on its car this weekend as the team looks to fight back at Red Bull's recent advances. The drivers are testing revised suspension and bodywork today.

21 min: This is good stuff from Alguersuari, who is learning his trade in front of the watching world. He finds another eight-tenths of a second as he posts 1m27.108s, but Buemi is now down to a 1m25.894s to maintain the top spot.

22 min: Timo Glock waited several minutes before coming out for a single installation lap in the Toyota. All appears routine down in the garage and he will be able to come out soon.

24 min: Alguersuari continues lowering his best time. Recently he posted 1m25.820s and then found another three-tenths with 1m25.585s. He remains second to team-mate Buemi, who posts 1m25.034s.

25 min: Jaime Alguersuari's ninth timed lap is the first where he hasn't seen an improvement in time. He is now back up an improving pace and set to lower his time further on this lap.

28 min: Slight improvements in the latest two laps from Jaime Alguersuari. He is now down to a 1m25.422s and remains second to team-mate Buemi, who has pitted.

28 min: Down in the Brawn garage, the team has removed some experimental bodywork from the top of Jenson Button's chassis. The parts were similar to the ridges on top of the tub that Red Bull introduced at Silverstone.

29 min: Toyota send both Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock out onto the circuit for a first run of laps.

30 min: Nick Heidfeld pits his BMW, which features the new nose we mentioned earlier. The part has been rushed forward to this weekend and has a sizable gap between the front wing supports.

31 min: Alguersuari pits at the end of a solid first run of laps. The Spaniard completed 11 timed laps - almost every one of them an improvement on the previous tour.

He will now have a pretty good idea of the corner apexes and where he needs to pay particular attention to for upcoming runs.

32 min: Jarno Trulli moves into third place with 1m27.488s as team-mate Glock posts 1m28.426s for fourth.

32 min: Kimi Raikkonen heads out with a set of the harder tyres on his Ferrari.

33 min: For the next four rounds, Bridgestone is breaking its policy of having two 'steps' between the available tyre compounds and will be supplying neighbouring options from the rubber range.

The tyre choice for this event is super soft and soft. This is good news for Brawn in particular as softer compounds are always easier to warm-up to temperature than harder tyres.

Bridgestone's Hirohide Hamashima explained: "We are bringing consecutive tyres from our range to Hungary because of the slippery surface and the circuit layout. This is the slowest speed permanent race circuit that we visit during the course of the season, and the surface itself is not aggressive enough to help generate heat in the tyres.

"The super soft and the soft Bridgestones are both from our low temperature working range of tyres. This makes it easier for the teams and drivers to generate heat and get the best performance from them."

33 min: Trulli and Glock both improve but remain in third and fourth positions respectively behind the Toro Rosso pair.

Sebastien Buemi is the quickest of the four drivers to have put a time on the board so far.

34 min: Jarno Trulli crosses the line in 1m24.983s as he gets down to serious running.

35 min: Glock was set to improve and join his team-mate at the top of the board but he had a slow final sector of the lap.

35 min: Kimi Raikkonen slots in slowest so far with his first flying lap of the day - 1m28.349s.

35 min: Trulli pounds on in the Toyota, and flashes across the line in 1m24.057s. He is now almost a full second up on Sebastien Buemi in second place.

36 min: Timo Glock splits the Toro Rosso drivers and moves into third spot with 1m25.209s.

37 min: Felipe Massa is also out for a run in his Ferrari. The track conditions will be slowly improving but there is much more grip to come as rubber goes down on the asphalt throughout the weekend.

37 min: Sebastien Buemi is back out on the track for a second run of laps.

38 min: Kimi Raikkonen improves ahead of team-mate Massa to fourth quickest in the early order.

38 min: Nico Rosberg crosses the line to start his first timed lap of the weekend. Giancarlo Fisichella has also just left the pits in the Force India, while team-mate Adrian Sutil is strapped into his car.

38 min: Timo Glock now makes it a Toyota one-two as he sets 1m24.913s to go second.

40 min: Jaime Alguersuari comes back out for a second run of laps in the Toro Rosso, as we see Nico Rosberg move up into third with a lap of 1m24.511s. Jarno Trulli remains out front in the Toyota, but more and more drivers are now posting times.

41 min: Fernando Alonso has his Renault near the top of the times with a 1m24.209s - second quickest at the moment.

41 min: Suddenly the track is very busy with only five drivers in the pits.

41 min: Felipe Massa is the next man to top the times as he clocks a 1m23.735s in the Ferrari.

43 min: Sebastian Vettel is taking things slowly this morning, with his first timed lap just making it into the top ten. He is beginning to move up on the next lap as he slots in fourth with 1m24.415s.

44 min: Robert Kubica springs up to fourth quickest as the times continue to tumble with the improving track conditions.

44 min: At the halfway stage in this first practice session, Felipe Massa leads the pack with a time of 1m23.735s, with Fernando Alonso second, Jarno Trulli now third, Robert Kubica fourth in the BMW and championship challenger Sebastian Vettel in fifth place.

45 min: Nico Rosberg joins the party up front with 1m23.810s which is good enough for third behind Massa and Alonso.

46 min: Rosberg is quicker still on his next lap and takes over the top spot with 1m23.268s ahead of Alonso.

46 min: Heikki Kovalainen has slotted in sixth on the ever-changing timesheet as he gets his first taste of the heavily revised McLaren.

47 min: Sebastian Vettel is up to third with Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber in fourth. Massa is fifth in the Ferrari and Heikki Kovalainen is sixth for McLaren.

49 min: Lewis Hamilton is back on track, following a short first run earlier in the session. He is up to second quickest after his latest tour.

49 min: Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello are noticeable by their absence in the top ten.

Both of them are now on a more competitive run and Barrichello just moves into tenth with 1m24.304s, while Button remains down in 19th.

50 min: Kazuki Nakajima jumps up from seventh to third with his latest lap - a 1m23.507s. Both Williams FW31s in the top four at the moment.

50 min: Robert Kubica now tops the times with a 1m23.219s but Mark Webber is on for a quick time in the Red Bull ...

50 min: Mark Webber puts his Red Bull Renault at the top and knocks over half-a-second off Kubica's recent mark. A 1m22.615 for the Australian.

52 min: Button is now up to eighth in the Brawn. He is quickly dropped down a place to ninth by team-mate Barrichello, who goes sixth with 1m23.507s.

52 min: Lewis Hamilton continues to keep his McLaren near the top as he moves to just over two tenths slower than Webber's benchmark in second position.

54 min: Hamilton pits at the end of the next lap, bringing his first run to an end.

55 min: The morning session is blowing hot and cold so far. Not long ago we had 15 cars on track - now it's just four.

Jaime Alguersuari is one of them and the Spaniard is continuing his learning curve. He moves up to 15th position with a lap of 1m24.252s - just 1.637s off the leading pace.

56 min: Timo Glock posts his best time of the morning so far and moves up to ninth place with 1m23.598s.

57 min: Kimi Raikkonen is back on track in the Ferrari. After the recent improvements, the Finn's earlier time has slipped to slowest overall.

58 min: Mark Webber leads the field after 58 minutes with a quickest lap of 1m22.615s. Lewis Hamilton is second with Robert Kubica third, Nico Rosberg fourth, Kazuki Nakajima making it two Williams cars in the top five and Rubens Barrichello is sixth place.

59 min: Raikkonen improves to 13th quickest as he gets a feel for the ever-improving track conditions.

60 min: A strange end to Jaime Alguersuari's latest run, as he brings the Toro Rosso in and it rolls to a halt some way short of the garage.

Several mechanics run up the pitlane to his aid and push the STR4 back to the garage.

61 min: Kimi improves to seventh quickest as his run continues.

62 min: A few of the drivers are coming back out for another run of laps. Among them are Mark Webber, Nico Rosberg, Kazuki Nakajima, Sebastian Vettel and Jenson Button.

63 min: Team-mate Massa, meanwhile, has been off road briefly with a harmless run over the grass at one of the chicanes.

65 min: Nico Rosberg is set to jump up the order ... and indeed he moves into third place with 1m23.191s. Mark Webber continues out front with Lewis Hamilton second.

66 min: Felipe Massa has been off again as the Ferrari refused to negotiate Turn 12. The Brazilian is back underway after a bounce over the run-off.

66 min: The slow Brawn improvement is continuing at the sun beats down on the circuit. Jenson Button is up to seventh place with a time of 1m23.37s. He is now 0.758s off Webber's leading pace.

68 min: Fernando Alonso is back to improving his times in the Renault and is now within half a second of Webber's benchmark in third.

69 min: Lewis Hamilton sets the fastest time in the first sector of the lap but repeats the problem of the previous tour with a fumble in the middle portion of the lap.

70 min: Force India have enjoyed greatly improved performances in recent races but so far today they are mired down at the foot of the order with Adrian Sutil in 19th, and team-mate Fisichella in 20th spot.

Both drivers are on the circuit and lapping just under two seconds off the pace at the moment.

72 min: Fisichella now makes a move and is up five places to 15th with a lap of 1m23.909s.

Meantime, Jaime Alguersuari is now back out on the track after rolling to a halt in the pitlane a short time ago.

73 min: Sebastian Vettel tells his Red Bull team that his tyre temperatures are sky high and he is struggling for grip.

This is very significant - Red Bull's ability to warm the tyres helped them win in Britain and Germany, while Brawn struggled, but could the same factor cause Red Bull to battle with overheating rubber here?

75 min: With 15 minutes to go in the first practice session, Mark Webber is still on top with a time of 1m22.615s, set some time ago. Lewis Hamilton is second and Fernando Alonso is third. Williams drivers Nakajima and Rosberg are fourth and fifth, With Massa sixth and Raikkonen seventh.

All seven drivers are in the pits at the moment.

75 min: The track temperature continues to rise in the sunshine and is now up to 38 Celsius.

78 min: Toyota drivers Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock are two of only a handful of drivers out on track at the moment. Jarno uses the relatively clear track to good effect and vaults up the order to second spot with 1m22.831s.

78 min: Glock also improves, but the effect is less dramatic. He is now tenth - 0.619s off Webber's leading time.

80 min: Jaime Alguersuari is pressing on with his introduction to the Toro Rosso. He has completed 34 laps of the circuit and hasn't been off track once. He has driven steadily and sensibly, and with a quickest time so far of 1m24.252s he is in 19th position.

He can be very pleased with his day's work so far.

82 min: Brawn drivers Barrichello and Button are back out on the track for a final run of laps as we move well into the last ten minutes of the session.

Barrichello moves up from 15th to 11th place with a lap just over half-a-second shy of Webber's best time.

83 min: Kimi Raikkonen improves to sixth quickest as he resumes running on the harder tyres.

Robert Kubica has moved up to seventh quickest in his BMW.

84 min: Lewis Hamilton is back on track ... and on top of the order. It is a new benchmark time at 1m22.554s from the world champion.

84 min: At Force India, the discussion is all about tyres. Adrian Sutil is told by his race engineer that generating heat into the front tyres is a real struggle. They will now look at suspension and camber settings, to try and generate a little more front-end grip, and give the German a better feel on turn-in when he is out there attacking the many slow corners on this circuit.

86 min: The improvements continue as Felipe Massa moves up to fifth quickest with a 1m23.040s lap in his Ferrari.

87 min: Kimi Raikkonen continues his run and moves up to third quickest as he continues to warm the harder tyres on his F60.

87 min: Nico Rosberg is down in ninth place, but this won't last long. The German is flying in the second sector of the lap and he flashes across the line in 1m22.337s to go fastest of all.

88 min: Lewis Hamilton was challenging to take the top time back from Rosberg but had a wobble in the McLaren at Turn 12 and has pitted.

89 min: Kazuki Nakajima is also very quick in the sister Williams FW31, and he moves up to fourth place with 1m22.619s.

Rosberg is at the top with Hamilton second and Webber third.

09:30 The session has ended. Cars that have already started a lap may complete it.

09:30 Rosberg is hammering round the circuit and sets the quickest second sector yet again, but ultimately he does not improve in overall time.

09:33 Heikki Kovalainen tours back into the pits as the fastest man so far in Hungary with the session-topping time set late in the revised McLaren.

09:34 That late lap pipped Nico Rosberg in the dying moments.

Lewis Hamilton is third in the other McLaren, with Mark Webber fourth, Kazuki Nakajima fifth and Jarno Trulli rounding out the top six.

09:38 The report is now available after a busy first practice in Hungary:

Kovalainen leads the way in practice 1

09:40 Heikki Kovalainen and Lewis Hamilton put McLaren as the best-placed team so far after the first practice session with Williams-Toyota not far behind.

An impressive 1.005 seconds covered the first 15 drivers, with Brawn and Red Bull (in the form of Vettel) taking a little time to get up and running.

However, the performance of the morning given the circumstances must be Jaime Alguersuari's 42 incident-free laps. He may have ended the session last, but he was only two-tenths of a second behind team-mate Sebastien Buemi.

Can the newcomer complete the job and cap a wonderful first day in Formula 1 this afternoon? Join us from 11:45 GMT for the second practice session as we find out.

  OVERVIEW PRACTICE ONE  
Session length: 90 minutes
  CURRENT WEATHER
Clear skies High Temp: 32°C / 90°F
Track: Dry
  INFOBOX
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  LIVE COVERAGE NAVIGATOR
Monday 20 Jul Start GMT
 Hungarian Grand Prix Weather 15:00
Friday 24 Jul
 Friday Morning Practice 07:45
 Friday Afternoon Practice 11:45
Saturday 25 Jul
 Saturday Morning Practice 08:45
 Qualifying 11:45
Sunday 26 Jul
 Race day at the Hungaroring 10:30
  ABOUT
Emlyn Hughes and Geoff Creighton are autosport.com's live commentary team. The dynamic duo have developed an inimitable style and a reputation for fast, accurate and insightful commentary. With unrivaled access to events unfolding at the circuit, they bring you the very latest, as it happens.

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