Monte Carlo - World champion Kimi Raikkonen on Thursday was the early pace-setter for Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix as he posted the fastest time in the first free practise session.
The Finn took his Ferrari around the 3.340-kilometer-long track in one minute 15.948 seconds, beating the McLaren-Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen by .268 and .300 seconds respectively.
Raikkonen's team-mate Felipe Massa, who won three of the last two three races, had the fourth-fastest time.
German driver Nico Rosberg, whose father Keke won the race in 1983, was a surprising fifth in his Williams.
A second session will be held in the afternoon, before qualifying Saturday determines grid positions.
Ahead of the sixth race of the season, Raikkonen, leads the drivers' standings on 35 points, with Massa and Hamilton, who are both on 28 points, second and third respectively.
Ferrari lead the constructors' standings with 63 points, 19 more than BMW-Sauber and 21 more than McLaren. (dpa)