Red Bull’s Max Verstappen pipped Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc to fastest practice time at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix before qualifying on Friday.
Verstappen was 0.037 seconds ahead, with their team-mates Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz third and fourth.
Lando Norris was fifth for McLaren as the team introduce a major car upgrade.
Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso did not do runs on the fastest ‘soft’ tyre.
Alonso was eighth fastest, Hamilton 11th and Russell 17th.
It was a torrid session for Alpine. Pierre Gasly suffered a major fire early in the session while team-mate Esteban Ocon stopped with what the team would say only was an “issue at the back of the car”.
This is the first weekend of a new format for the ‘sprint’ races.
Qualifying at 14:00 UK time will set the grid for the main grand prix on Sunday, while a second qualifying session will run on Saturday to set the grid for the ‘sprint’ race later that day.
It was an incident-packed session.
Sainz hit the inside wall early on, without harm. Alpha Tauri’s Yuki Tsunoda spun and punctured a tyre at Turn Two. Leclerc went off twice without harm, locking up at Turn Seven and then Turn Two. And Williams driver Logan Sargeant had an incident at Turn One where the front wing seemed to fail and drop down, causing him to lock a front tyre.
Behind Norris, Alpha Tauri’s Nyck de Vries was sixth fastest, ahead of Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll, Alonso, Williams’ Alex Albon and Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu.