Barrichello Tops First Practice in Monaco

Brawn GP's Rubens Barrichello topped the first day of practice on the streets of Monte Carlo, setting the best time of 1:17.189, ahead of Ferrari's Felipe Massa and McLaren's Lewis Hamilton. The Brazilian driver secured the best time of the morning session in its second part and managed to maintain on top of the timing charts despite all drivers running on super-soft tires in the last 10 minutes of the session.

The action at Monaco was quite thrilling during the mid-session, with reigning champion Hamilton, Massa, Barrichello, 2009 practice champion Nico Rosberg, Toyota's Timo Glock and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen all switching spots on top of the timing sheets.

Sebastian Vettel was to be denied of a premier spot within the Practice 1 standings, as his Red Bull RB5 suffered an engine blow on track and had to be immediately parked in the garage (after previously letting out a terminal stream of blue smoke on the Monte Carlo track). Teammate Mark Webber didn't have a very successful outing on Thursday morning either, as he had to was forced to pit with a vibration at the rear of his RB5 after only 22 laps.

The last 10-minute stint of the practice session was to bring nothing new to the table, as all drivers decided to return to the track at once. Under the circumstances, scoring fast laps was out of the question. In addition, McLaren's duo Lewis Hamilton & Heikki Kovalainen, plus championship leader Jenson Button all went wide at St Devote.

Kovalainen was to eventually finish 4th in the time charts, followed by Raikkonen and Williams Duo Nakajima-Rosberg. Button, Alonso and Webber completed the Top 10. Here are the unofficial results of Practice No 1 in Monaco:

1. Rubens Barrichello ( Brawn-Mercedes)              1:17.189
2. Felipe Massa (Ferrari)                                         1:17.499
3. Lewis Hamilton (McLaren-Mercedes)                  1:17.578
4. Heikki Kovalainen (McLaren-Mercedes)              1:17.686
5. Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)                                      1:17.839
6. Kazuki Nakajima (Williams-Toyota)                      1:18.000
7. Nico Rosberg (Williams-Toyota)                           1:18.024
8. Jenson Button (Brawn-Mercedes)                        1:18.080
9. Fernando Alonso (Renault)                                  1:18.283
10. Mark Webber (Red Bull-Renault)                       1:18.348
11. Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso-Ferrari)               1:18.695
12. Nelsinho Piquet (Renault)                                  1:19.204
13. Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull-Renault)                   1:19.233
14. Sebastien Bourdais (Toro Rosso-Ferrari)           1:19.255
15. Giancarlo Fisichella ( Force India-Mercedes)     1:19.534
16. Robert Kubica (BMW-Sauber)                            1:19.560
17. Nick Heidfeld (BMW-Sauber)                              1:19.579
18. Adrian Sutil (Force India-Mercedes)                   1:19.600
19. Timo Glock (Toyota)                                            1:19.698
20. Jarno Trulli (Toyota)                                             1:19.831
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