Mexico, FP2: Verstappen sets the pace in second practice in Mexico City

Bottas 2nd, Hamilton 3rd


By Olivier Ferret

5 November 2021 - 23:09
Mexico, FP2: Verstappen sets the (...)

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

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