F1 Portuguese Grand Prix LIVE: Follow all the latest from the Algarve

THE F1 season continues this weekend with a high-octane race in store in Portugal.

Lewis Hamilton is in control of the Driver's Championship after victory in Germany last weekend, but teammate Valtteri Bottas will be out for revenge – and today it's all about qualifying.

Follow all the latest from Portugal with our blog below…

  • Alan Scott

    GOOD MORNING, F1 FANS

    Valtteri Bottas topped both practice sessions as the Finn put down an early marker for the Portuguese GP.

    Bottas beat Lewis Hamilton in FP1, but the afternoon session was wrecked by two red flags.

    The first stoppage came when Pierre Gasly's AlphaTauri dramatically caught fire.

    Max Verstappen and Lance Stroll then had a ridiculous crash at Turn One forcing another break in practice.

    Meanwhile, Hamilton admits he is finding the Portimao circuit extremely tricky.

    The Mercedes ace told Sky Sports: “It’s an incredibly difficult circuit. Massively challenging.

    “The undulations are incredible. There’s a lot of places you just can’t see where you’re going. 

    “The exit of turn eight, you’re looking at the sky for a period of time and you have no idea what’s beyond the hill. 

    “Also into 11, you’re coming in and you don’t know where you are, all of a sudden it arrives at you out of nowhere.

    “So it’s very challenging. The surface is very smooth. You see a lot of people making mistakes and sliding and spinning so it’s not been an easy day.”

    Hamilton has also rubbished suggestions he lived “a playboy” lifestyle – but says he now enjoys staying in.

    He added: “People have, over the years, assumed many things in terms of how my lifestyle is.

    “I know I'm given this playboy kind of image, which is not really me.

    “If you were to go home and see me with my family, you'd know my core values.”

  • Anthony Chapman

    DRIFTER

    This will get you in the mood for tomorrow's qualifying in Portugal!

  • Anthony Chapman

    PORT THWART

    Lewis Hamilton admits he is finding the Portimao circuit extremely tricky.

    The Mercedes ace told Sky Sports: “It’s an incredibly difficult circuit. Massively challenging.

    “The undulations are incredible. There’s a lot of places you just can’t see where you’re going.

    “The exit of turn eight, you’re looking at the sky for a period of time and you have no idea what’s beyond the hill.

    “Also into 11, you’re coming in and you don’t know where you are, all of a sudden it arrives at you out of nowhere.

    “So it’s very challenging. The surface is very smooth. You see a lot of people making mistakes and sliding and spinning so it’s not been an easy day.”

  • Anthony Chapman

    ON FORM

    Here's some great footage of Stroll and Verstappen's clash today.

    Thrilling stuff – especially at those speeds!

  • Anthony Chapman

    HAM SOLO

    Lewis Hamilton has rubbished suggestions he lived “a playboy” lifestyle – but says he now enjoys staying in.

    He said: “People have, over the years, assumed many things in terms of how my lifestyle is.

    “I know I'm given this playboy kind of image, which is not really me.

    “If you were to go home and see me with my family, you'd know my core values.”

  • Anthony Chapman

    FROM SUNSPORT’S BEN HUNT

    Valtteri Bottas topped both practice sessions as the Finn put down an early marker for the Portuguese GP.

    Bottas beat Lewis Hamilton in FP1.

    But the afternoon session was wrecked by two red flags.

    The first stoppage came when Pierre Gasly's AlphaTauri dramatically caught fire while Max Verstappen.

    Lance Stroll then had a ridiculous crash at Turn One forcing another break in practice.

  • Ben Hunt

    FP2 IS DONE

    Bottas tops the session. The Finn gets his weekend off to a great start after leading both sessions.

    Lewis Hamilton was second-quickest in FP1 one was only eighth in FP2 in a session wrecked by two safety cars.

    Verstappen, who caused one of the red flags after clashing with Lance Stoll, was P2 and Lando Norris in P3.

  • Ben Hunt

    FIVE MINUTES TO GO

    And it is Bottas, Verstappen, Leclerc, Vettel, Gasly, Hamilton, Russell, Albon, Norris and Perez in P10.

    But this session has been hampered by the Pirelli test and two red flags.

  • Ben Hunt

    TRACK IS OPEN

    The pitlane light goes green and we have a little over seven minutes remaining.

  • Ben Hunt

    STILL, THE RED FLAG IS OUT

    But the session time is ticking down. When FP2 does get under way, it will be another frantic one.

  • Ben Hunt

    CRASH STROLL AND VERSTAPPEN COLLIDE – RED FLAG

    That is a BIG mistake from Stroll, who clatters in to the Red Bull man. Crazy stuff.

    The Canadian could be in for a penalty here.

  • Ben Hunt

    BUSY TRACK

    Less than 30 minutes to go and it is a busy track as drivers look to complete their programmes.

    Bottas currently quickest from Verstappen.

  • Ben Hunt

    WE ARE GO AGAIN

    After Gasly's car is cleared, the track is open and the session is back on.

    Mercedes's Hamilton and Bottas are first out on track.

  • Ben Hunt

    GASLY'S CAR IS ON FIRE – RED FLAG

    Session has been stopped…

    The Frencham pulled over quickly and his AlphaTauri caught fire. The blaze quickly erupted.

    There was a delay before marshals go there to extinguish the blaze.

  • Ben Hunt

    HAMILTON NOT HAPPY ON THESE TYRES

    He has complained about too much vibration. He comes in to pit. He's had enough of them.

    Mercedes will now feed all the info back to Pirelli and their engineers working on next year's car.

  • Ben Hunt

    SO FAR SO GOOD

    A spin for Carlos Sainz, but no other dramas yet on these unknown tyres. It is all pretty nerdy but it is important for both Pirelli and the teams to get some understanding of next year's tyres.

  • Ben Hunt

    FP2 IS GO

    And this will be a strange one as for the first part of this session, the teams will be using prototype Pirelli tyres for next season.

    So plenty of running, but the teams won't actually know what compounds they are running.

  • Richard Forrester

    CUTTING CORNERS

    Watch how Max Verstappen span out during P1 while taking on the elevation at turn four.

    The 23-year-old recovered to finish the session third fastest.

  • Richard Forrester

    THE STANDINGS

    Take a look at the results from the first practice session in Portugal.

    Mercedes unsurprisingly take the 1-2 with Verstappen and LeClerc third and fourth fastest.

  • Ben Hunt

    FP 1 IS DONE

    Good start for Mercedes, as Bottas leads Hamilton in a 1-2 finish for the session.

    That man Verstappen again makes up the top three while Leclerc is in P4.

    Albon P5 and Sainz in P6.

    Plenty of running although early signs are that there won't be too much overtaking on Sunday.

  • Ben Hunt

    30 MINUTES TO GO

    And Hamilton is topping the time sheets from Leclerc and then Perez. Bottas currently in P4.

    So a solid start from Mercedes, as expected, but also from Ferrari.

    Vettel in P7 as Ferrari seem to have found some pace in their upgrades for this race.

  • Ben Hunt

    PROBLEMS FOR RUSSELL AND VERSTAPPEN

    Both drivers have yet to set competitive lap times but should both be out on track soon.

  • Ben Hunt

    SPIN FOR LECLERC

    The Ferrari man also suffers from a lack of grip and almost beaches his car in the gravel.

    So far Hamilton tops the timesheets from Gasly.

  • Ben Hunt

    FP1 IS GO

    And it is an early start for Carlos Sainz, who complaining of a lack of grip in his McLaren.

    Hardly surprising given the lack of action on the track.

    Big issue too is the track limits – there are some areas with plenty of run off, which encourages drivers to run wide on the track.

    But if they do that, they could have their lap times deleted by the stewards.

  • James Orr

    PET PEEVE

    Lewis Hamilton has blasted the FIA's decision to hire Vitaly Petrov as a steward for this weekend's Portuguese Grand Prix after the Russian's outspoken remarks.

    Last month, the former F1 racer was quoted by Russian publication Championat, criticising Hamilton's anti-racism stance as being “too much”.

    Petrov is also quoted as saying “let's say a driver admits to being gay – will they come out with a rainbow flag and urge everyone to become gay as well?”

    SunSport put those quotes to Hamilton ahead of this weekend's race and the world champion said he was shocked to see him appointed by the FIA as part of their four-man panel who effectively referee the race.

    He said: “I have not seen all the quotes, and you have just recited some of them.

    “Of course, it is a surprise to see that they are hiring someone who has those beliefs and is so vocal about things we are trying to fight against.

    “You should take it up with the FIA because there is nothing I can particularly do about.”

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