And that’s the end of the session. Alonso is quickest from Di Resta and Sutil. Join us again for FP2 at 12.00 GBT, 13.00 BST.
Free Practice 1
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Not great for Lotus though. 21st and 22nd respectively!
@Lotus_F1Team: Both drivers out, that's us done for the morning.
Perez climbs out of the car, his session done. He’s fourth fastest.
Van der Garde has a bit of an off track excursion at Eau Rouge.
Half the field out for a final blast in this session.
@MyCaterhamF1: Six minutes left of FP1 and both cars are sent out for their final run on the hard tyres. "Eau Rouge is very wet" reports @GvanderGarde
Van der Garde and Bianchi are also out.
Jean-Eric Vergne is out on the orange hard compound again.
Still no activity out on the circuit. Teams will be wary of damaging intermediate tyres as they have already done significant running in similar conditions.
It may be a couple of minutes now before we get another runner. The lap times will now not be beaten.
@WilliamsF1Team: Valtteri back in the pits now while the team make some more changes
The reason is because it is raining again. There was a wobble for Grosjean into Eau Rouge just before he came in.
Every driver now back in the pits.
@MyCaterhamF1: Rain's starting to fall so both @GvanderGarde and @H_Kovalainen are brought back in after run 2. Currently 16th (KOV) and 17th (VDG)
Only Perez, Button and Grosjean now on the circuit.
Raikkonen is back out and running, one of two cars on the circuit.
@InsideFerrari: Practice start for @alo_oficial. He is P1 in 1.55.198. Prove di partenza per Fernando, P1 in 1.55.198.
The Spaniard is the quickest man on the circuit with a 1:55.198.
Alonso now practicing some starts near the pit lane exit.
@OfficialSF1Team: More rain expected as #SpaHulk sets a 1:56.110 P7 at the moment.
Blue sky now so that Lotus radar prediction is a bit of a mystery.
Gutierrez slows down into the final chicane and really catches Hamilton out. That could have been an incident. Perez runs wide at Pouhon.
And Paul di Resta is now the quickest man with a 1:55.224.
Still lots of change at the top with Perez fastest from Rosberg and Sutil. That rain hasn’t fallen yet.
Raikkonen has still not been out since that earlier issue. Alonso goes quickest once again.
A great middle sector from Fernando Alonso and he now goes quickest. Close to the pole position sector 2 time of last year. Perez then goes even quicker.
Straight back to Button again. The time 1:57.337s.
A really busy circuit at the moment. Hamilton now quickest from Ricciardo.
And Button betters him immediately. They’ll be some lead changes until the rain comes. Vergne goes second.
It doesn’t last long. Rosberg goes fastest. Rain expected in about seven minutes time.
And Button retakes his top spot with a 1:58.940s.
@MyCaterhamF1: With the track starting to dry it's time for slick tyres so @GvanderGarde heads out for run 2 on a set of the hard prime tyre @pirellisport
Almost every driver on the slick tyre. Still treacherous into the Bus Stop and Turn 1.
And Bottas also spins off at turn 1, exactly as Vettel did.
Indeed it does as Perez goes quickest with a 2:00.439s on the hard compound tyre.
He then turns in aggressively into turn 1 and spins around. He was still second fastest so Buton’s time may be eclipsed.
Some steam coming of Vettel’s tyre in the final chicane where it’s still quite wet.
Webber improves to 7th fastest so the circuit may be drying out.
Perez now goes out on the harder tyre. A lot of teams opting to follow the Red Bull lead.
Raikkonen’s problem was front right wheel hub related.
Sectors one and three are still wet and Nico Rosberg has been told about Webber’s dry tyre run.
Vettel follows Webber’s lead and goes out on the dry tyre.
He goes 12th quickest. It’s all about getting aerodynamic data in sector two. Not such a crazy idea.
The second sector is dry and he may get some relevant data.
Mark Webber is out for only his third lap of the day. He’s on slicks! Very brave.
The circuit is wetter than it was to begin with so Button’s time could actually be unbeatable. We shall see.
@MyCaterhamF1: 1st corner, last corner and entry to Eau Rouge are all "fully wet" reports @H_Kovalainen ... "it's like an on / off switch"
The weather has remained consistent with light misty drizzle. Frustrating for the teams so far.
Mechanics are taking photos of the front right tyre in the pits. It could be a brake problem we just don’t know yet.
It could have been a DRS induced wobble, no apparent sign of a puncture. His right front locked up.
A wobbly moment for Raikkonen at Blanchimont and he really backs off. The car pulled to the left and he returns to the pits. A puncture?
@Lotus_F1Team: Back out for another play, the tech guys changed some stuff on #Kimi's car
@MyCaterhamF1: Both drivers backing off to let the tyres cool down for the next lap as they both report overheating rears early into the run
Van der Garde: ‘The rear tyres are already starting to go a little bit’. It’s only his fifth lap.
The good news is that half the field is out on the circuit.
McLaren still running 1-2. Button’s early time still the benchmark.
Jean-Eric Vergne is now the third quickest man, displacing Gutierrez.
A measure of the cautious approach to first practice is that only seven drivers have set times so far.
Drivers are getting caught out at the chicane as it’s still the wettest place.
So an hour to go and it’s been tough going. Teams not wanting to burn the intermediates too much. Tricky conditions for the first half hour.
Gutierrez jumps to third quickest with a 2:03.146. He locks up and runs wide at the Bus Stop.
It’s raining at the top of the hill around Les Combes but it’s not raining heavily enough for full wets. It’s killing the intermediate tyres.
Button remains the fastest man on the circuit. Raikkonen has completed the most laps with 6.
Grosjean follows his teammate’s lead in running wide at the final chicane.
Still no sign of this heavy rain but it’s on the way we hear.
Lotus are running their passive DRS system which should give them an advantage on the straight. To compromise, they’re running a big rear wing angle for the tighter sections.
A lock up by Raikkonen into the final chicane, caught out by the wet patch.
Button has set a time, albeit a slow one. He canters round in 2:00.510s.
Kovalainen now told that a large block of rain is approaching and these showers will last for a while.
The radar says that more rain is on the way. Maybe a switch to full wets soon.
Button says that if he does one more lap on the inters he will damage the rears.
There’s an interesting mix of dry patches and wet patches. Bottas goes a little sideways at the Bus Stop.
He runs a little wide of the track at Les Combes.
Bottas has a little excursion over the bumps on the Kemmel Straight.
All drivers on the intermediate tyre. Still no flying laps and no times set.
Mechanics are working on Sutil’s car with the engine off. Brits Button and Chilton venture out.
Jules Bianchi currently the only man out on the circuit. It’s one of those typical opening practice sessions so far.
A lot of inactivity at the moment. Vettel returns to the pits.
Only Vettel currently out on the circuit.
Every driver has now completed an installation lap and it won’t be long before we have the first time of the weekend.
@WilliamsF1Team: In typical Spa fashion the drivers are reporting some wet corners but some dry sections- discussing tyre options now #BelgianGP #FP1
@OfficialSF1Team: Both cars back in the garage. #Hulk says sector 2 is pretty dry. #SpaFrancorchamps
Alonso is out. Interestingly, he has never won the Belgian Grand Prix.
Cars are now back in the pits after completing an installation lap. Vettel and Sutil the only drivers yet to go out.
It’s a fine balancing act today as teams won’t want to burn up their wet weather tyres with rain forecast on Sunday.
The Red Bulls, Alonso and Hamilton still yet to venture out.
A few cars have gone out on intermediates, which is probably the correct option for the conditions. It’s only light, misty rain.
The track temperature is 16 degrees and Pirelli have brought the hard and medium compounds to the circuit. Kovalainen has gone out on full wets.
Kimi Raikkonen is the first man to hit the circuit.
The pit lane is open and we’re underway at last! Rain is in the air as we await the opening runners.
@MyCaterhamF1: A familiar crash helmet ready for FP1... @H_Kovalainen pic.twitter.com/qJsH0Db8K6
Ten minutes to go until the pit lane opens and once more we will hear the sound of Formula One engines.
@OfficialSF1Team: After a lot of (untypical) sunshine yesterday it's a rainy start to the day here in #SpaFrancorchamps
The fabulous Spa-Francorchamps circuit is one of the biggest tests of driver skill on the calendar and weather can often be a factor. And after sunshine yesterday, it’s a rainy start to the day. Great stuff!
It is also thought that Kimi Raikkonen still has plenty of potions, including Red Bull and Ferrari.
Formula One’s silly season is in full swing with rumours circulating that Red Bull may announce Daniel Ricciardo as their second driver for 2013 this weekend.
Another Finn also returns to Formula One action today with Heikki Kovalainen returning to the cockpit of the Caterham in place of Charles Pic.
Kimi Raikkonen called in sick yesterday and so missed Thursday’s press conferences but he will take part in practice today.
Hello and welcome to the return of Formula One for the first time in almost a month! I’m here to keep you updated on all the events from Belgium starting with free practice 1 which commences at 09.00 BST.