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Loose manhole cover causes opening practice at Las Vegas Grand Prix to be cut short

LAS VEGAS – The Las Vegas Grand Prix got off to an embarrassing start after the first practice session on the new circuit was cut short after around 10 minutes on Thursday (Friday Manila time) due to a loose drain cover.

Ferrari's Carlos Sainz had his vehicle stop after hitting a bump, resulting in a red flag. After some delay organizers announced that the session would not be resumed.

"Following inspection, it was the concrete frame around a manhole cover that has failed. We now need to check all of the other manhole covers which will take some time," the International Motoring Federation (FIA) said in a statement.

"We will be discussing with the local circuit engineering team about the length of time it will take to resolve and will update with any resultant changes to the schedule."

A second practice session was scheduled for midnight local time in Vegas and organizers faced a race against time to make the checks and necessary repairs in time.

Ferrari's Charles Leclerc had posted the fastest lap with a time of 1:40.909.