ALL SMILES: Mercedes' Nico Rosberg dominated the first free practice session of the 2015 Belgian GP. Image: AP / Luca Bruno
SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS, Belgium — Nico Rosberg edged Mercedes team mate Lewis Hamilton in the first practice session on Friday (August 21) for the 2015 Belgian Grand Prix.
Hamilton leads Rosberg by 21 points in the Formula 1 drivers' standing. Both Mercedes cars underperformed in the final race before the summer break in Hungary.
Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo was a close third, while Ferrari drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel were next.
Rosberg nipped Hamilton by 0.242 seconds, and all top five finishers were inside a second, as well as Daniil Kvyat in the second Red Bull.
Read: 2015 Belgian GP first practice as it happened
Pastor Maldonaldo crashed his Lotus coming out of a turn and lost his front right wheel but was not hurt.
Ferrari hopes to celebrate its 900th Grand Prix with a victory, after Vettel's win in Hungary.
2015 Belgian Grand Prix: 1st practice results
1. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1min51.082
2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 1min51.324
3. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) RedBull - Renault 1min51.373
4. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Ferrari 1min51.478
5. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Ferrari 1min51.866
6. Daniil Kvyat (Russia) RedBull - Renault 1min51.960
7. Max Verstappen (Netherlands) Toro Rosso - Renault 1min52.158
8. Carlos Sainz Jr (Spain) Toro Rosso - Renault 1min52.421
9. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Force India - Mercedes 1min52.423
10. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams-Mercedes 1min52.511
11. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Lotus - Mercedes 1min52.539
12. Nico Hulkenberg (Germany) Force India - Mercedes 1min52.614
13. Felipe Nasr (Brazil) Sauber - Ferrari 1min52.640
14. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Williams-Mercedes 1min52.653
15. Marcus Ericsson (Sweden) Sauber - Ferrari 1min53.426
16. Fernando Alonso (Spain) McLaren 1min53.502
17. Jolyon Palmer (Britain) Lotus - Mercedes 1min53.799
18. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1min54.225
19. Will Stevens (Britain) Marussia - Ferrari 1min55.501
20. Roberto Merhi (Spain) Marussia - Ferrari 1min56.086