COTA, FP2: Hamilton on top in second practice in Austin ahead of Leclerc

Verstappen 3rd, Vettel 4th

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By Olivier Ferret

1 November 2019 - 22:38
COTA, FP2: Hamilton on top in (...)

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton went quickest in the second practice session for the United States Grand Prix, lapping three tenths of a second faster than Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and third-placed Red Bull driver Max Verstappen

Leclerc led the way in the early part of the 90-minute session, with the Monegasque racer climbing to the top of the timesheet with a lap of 1:34.434 on medium compound Pirelli tyres as Hamilton restricted himself to the hard compound.

Prior to Leclerc’s table topper the opening phase session was briefly interrupted when Romain Grosjean crashed in Turn 5. The Haas driver lost control and arrowed into the barriers. The incident brought out the red flags while the Frenchman’s car was recovered.

Halfway through the session the field began to migrate to soft tyres for qualifying simulations and again it was Leclerc who initially set the pace with a time of 1:33.553, though the Ferrari driver might have gone quicker if not for a slightly slow final sector.

It was left to Hamilton to lead the way and just a couple of minutes after Leclerc has established the benchmark the Briton crossed the line in a 1:33.232 to beat the young Ferrari star by 0.301 with Verstappen 0.014s further back.

Sebastian Vettel was fourth in the second Ferrari, though the German was more than three tenths of a second slower than team-mate Leclerc and some 0.658s behind Hamilton. Valtteri Bottas was fifth in the second Mercedes, while Alex Albon finished sixth in the second Red Bull.

Best of the rest honours went to Pierre Gasly. The Frenchman couldn’t match the fourth pace he’d reached in the morning session but his lap of 1:34.509, 1.277 off Hamilton was good enough for seventh place and continued the Toro Rosso driver’s good start to the weekend.
Carlos Sainz took eighth place for McLaren 34, a little under two tenths behind Gasly, Lance Stroll was ninth for Racing Point and the final top-10 position went to Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi.

Pos.DriverCarTimeLaps
01 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W10 1:33.232 34
02 Charles Leclerc Ferrari SF90 1:33.533 33
03 Max Verstappen Red Bull Honda RB15 1:33.547 28
04 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF90 1:33.890 35
05 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes W10 1:34.045 34
06 Alex Albon Red Bull Honda RB15 1:34.434 32
07 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso Honda STR14 1:34.509 31
08 Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault MCL34 1:34.667 34
09 Lance Stroll Racing Point Mercedes RP19 1:34.744 29
10 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Ferrari C38 1:34.839 29
11 Daniel Ricciardo Renault RS19 1:34.924 29
12 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso Honda STR14 1:34.975 36
13 Nico Hülkenberg Renault RS19 1:34.988 32
14 Lando Norris McLaren Renault MCL34 1:35.025 30
15 Sergio Pérez Racing Point Mercedes RP19 1:35.109 26
16 Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo Ferrari C38 1:35.387 34
17 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-19 1:35.442 28
18 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari VF-19 1:35.789 4
19 George Russell Williams Mercedes FW42 1:36.749 37
20 Robert Kubica Williams Mercedes FW42 1:37.283 33

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