Mexico, FP2: Verstappen sets the pace in second practice in Mexico City
Bottas 2nd, Hamilton 3rd
Formula 1 championship leader Max Verstappen went quickest in the second practice session for the Mexico City Grand Prix, beating Mercedes drivers Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton by more than four tenths of a second.
Red Bull driver Verstappen was quick out of the blocks in the afternoon session at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez topping the times during the early phase of the session largely run on medium compound tyres, seven tenths of a second ahead of seond-placed team-mate Sergio Pérez.
And when the field switched to soft tyres for their qualifying simulations, Verstappen was similarly in control. He posted a time 1:17.301 midway through the session and his opening flying lap stood as the session’s best through to the chequered flag.
He finished 0.424 seconds ahead of Bottas who used a second run on soft tyres to leapfrog Hamilton who ended the session over a half a second off Verstappen’s pace.
Pérez have his home fans something to cheer with fourth place, just six hundredths of a second behind Hamilton.
After finishing sixth and eighth in the morning session, Ferrari gained ground in the afternoon with Carlos Sainz finishing in fifth place just over a tenths of a second ahead of AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly. Sainz finished three tenths of a second clear of Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc who took seventh place. Ferrari’s progress was, however, marred by Leclerc telling his team that he was “struggling so much with the engine issues".
Eight place in the session went to Yuki Tsunoda in the second AlphaTauri. However, the Japanese driver will start the race from the back after confirming earlier in the day that he will take engine penalties this weekend. Sebastian Vettel took ninth for Aston Martin, while Fernando Alonso closed out the top 10 for Alpine.
Eleventh place in the session went to Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Räikkönen, with Lando Norris in 12th place for McLaren on a difficult day for the Mercedes-powered team. Teammate Daniel Ricciardo finished 15th, but managed only seven laps due to a gearbox problem.
There was a gearbox issue too for Williams’ George Russell who only completed two untimed laps in the session before heading back to the pit lane.
|01||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Honda RB16B||1:17.301||28|
|02||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes W12||1:17.725||31|
|03||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes W12||1:17.810||26|
|04||Sergio Pérez||Red Bull Honda RB16B||1:17.871||26|
|05||Carlos Sainz||Ferrari SF21||1:18.318||29|
|06||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri Honda AT02||1:18.429||29|
|07||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari SF21||1:18.605||28|
|08||Yuki Tsunoda||AlphaTauri Honda AT02||1:18.644||31|
|09||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21||1:18.681||32|
|10||Fernando Alonso||Alpine Renault A521||1:18.732||27|
|11||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41||1:18.841||25|
|12||Lando Norris||McLaren Mercedes MCL35M||1:18.979||27|
|13||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C41||1:19.227||31|
|14||Esteban Ocon||Alpine Renault A521||1:19.431||37|
|15||Daniel Ricciardo||McLaren Mercedes MCL35M||1:19.521||7|
|16||Mick Schumacher||Haas Ferrari VF-21||1:19.620||30|
|17||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin Mercedes AMR21||1:19.730||36|
|18||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Mercedes FW43B||1:20.820||17|
|19||Nikita Mazepin||Haas Ferrari VF-21||1:21.581||28|
|20||George Russell||Williams Mercedes FW43B||-:—.---||2|