Interlagos, FP2: Bottas heads Mercedes one-two

A big crash for Nico Hulkenberg

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By Olivier Ferret

9 November 2018 - 19:32
Interlagos, FP2: Bottas heads (...)

Valtteri Bottas led a Mercedes one-two in second practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix, finishing just three thousandths of a second ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton. Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was the Mercedes’ closest challenger finishing seven hundredths of a second behind champion Hamilton.

Bottas set his session-best time just after the session was a third of the way through. After early laps on soft tyres, Bottas followed Vettel out on track on supersofts.

Both backed off on their initial flyers and went for a second attempt, with Vettel initially claiming top spot with his lap of 1:08.919. Bottas was close behind, however, and he took over at the top moments later when he crossed the line in 1:08.846.

Hamilton emerged on supersofts on the 40-minute mark, and despite setting the fastest first and third sector time, the champion lost out to his team-mate in the more technical middle sector and this finished in P2 with a best time of 1:0.8.849.

With Vettel third, fourth place in the session went to Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who finished 0.3s behind Bottas but 0.175 ahead of team-mate Max Verstappen, who spent much of the session in the garage with a suspected oil leak on his car.

Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen took sixth place ahead of Romain Grosjean, with the Haas driver repeating his morning efforts by finish in a best-of-the rest seventh place.

The French driver finished 0.174s ahead of Sauber’s Charles Leclerc by 0.174s, who edged second Haas driver Kevin Magnussen by 0.064s. Tenth place in the session went to Esteban Ocon of Racing Point Force India, who finished 1.313 off Bottas.

There was trouble in the session for Nico Hulkenberg. The Renault driver crashed out nine minutes into the session, spinning into the barriers when he dropped a right-front wheel onto the grass on the exit of Turn 14. The German driver damaged both ends of his car in the incident and he played no further part in the session.

Pos.DriverTeamTimeLaps
01 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes AMG 1:08.846 48
02 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes AMG 1:08.849 43
03 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:08.919 42
04 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Tag Heuer 1:09.164 44
05 Max Verstappen Red Bull Tag Heuer 1:09.339 28
06 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:09.412 42
07 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 1:09.769 44
08 Charles Leclerc Sauber Ferrari 1:09.943 44
09 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 1:10.007 39
10 Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 1:10.159 45
11 Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 1:10.320 23
12 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso Honda 1:10.330 44
13 Fernando Alonso McLaren Renault 1:10.332 36
14 Carlos Sainz Renault F1 1:10.458 48
15 Marcus Ericsson Sauber Ferrari 1:10.532 44
16 Sergey Sirotkin Williams Mercedes 1:10.569 46
17 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Renault 1:10.596 26
18 Lance Stroll Williams Mercedes 1:10.662 44
19 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso Honda 1:10.734 46
20 Nico Hulkenberg Renault F1 1:11.674 6

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