Reigning Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton set a blistering pace in his Mercedes as he topped the opening practice session for the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Hamilton - who is looking to match another Michael Schumacher record this weekend with an eighth victory at the Hungaroring which would equal the German’s tally scored at former French Grand Prix venue Magny-Cours - edged Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas by 0.086s despite being on harder tyres.

Fresh from winning the Styrian Grand Prix last weekend and cutting the gap to Bottas in the championship to just six points, the six-times world champion set his quickest lap on Pirelli’s Hard compound tyre, while Bottas was running on the Mediums.

Hamilton’s Hard-shod effort was also faster than the 1m17.2 lap he set on Soft tyres to top the first practice session in Budapest at last year’s race.

Sergio Perez continued Racing Point’s impressive form by finishing half a second adrift of the Mercedes pair on Soft tyres, ahead of teammate Lance Stroll.

Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo outpaced the Ferrari duo by a tenth in fifth place for Renault, with Sebastian Vettel faster than teammate Charles Leclerc.

Red Bull had been expected to close the gap to Mercedes at the Hungaroring this weekend after being comfortably beaten at the two opening rounds in Austria, but Max Verstappen was curiously 1.432s off the pace on Soft tyres.

Lando Norris and Esteban Ocon rounded out the top 10 for McLaren and Renault respectively, with Kevin Magnussen 12th for Haas, just a fraction clear of the second Red Bull driven by Alex Albon.

14th spot went the way of Romain Grosjean, while Nicholas Latifi had an encouraging FP1 for Williams as he managed a time good enough for 15th to place him higher than his highly-rated teammate George Russell.

Daniil Kvyat was 16th ahead of Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi and Russell, who has been confirmed as remaining at Williams for next season.

Meanwhile, Robert Kubica was 19th fastest on his second consecutive FP1 outing for Alfa Romeo, with the Pole this time deputising for Kimi Raikkonen.

A power unit problem in his Honda engine prevented AlphaTauri driver Pierre Gasly from even completing a formation lap as he was restricted to watching the action from the garage and subsequently propped up the FP1 order.