Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time of the first practice session in Monaco, beating Fernando Alonso at the last minute by a tenth of a second. Nico Rosberg was third for Mercedes, ahead of Felipe Massa and the two McLarens, with Lewis Hamilton ahead of Jenson Button. Pastor Maldonado was seventh in the Williams, ahead of Adrian Sutil’s Force India, Vitaly Petrov’s Renault and Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes, although the veteran ended his session by crashing sideways into the barriers at Ste Devote.
Nick Heidfeld was 11th in his Renault, ahead of Sebastien Buemi’s Toro Rosso, Rubens Barrichello in the second Williams. Then came Daniel Ricciardo in the second Toro Rosso and the two Saubers of Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez. Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli were 17th and 18th for Lotus, ahead of Paul di Resta, the two Virgins of Jerome d’Ambrosio and Timo Glock, the two HRTs of Tonio Liuzzi and Narain Karthikeyan and Mark Webber who did just a couple of laps because of technical troubles with his Red Bull.