Mugello, FP2: Bottas continues to set the pace ahead of Hamilton, Verstappen

A crash for Lando Norris, a clash between Raikkonen and Perez


By Olivier Ferret

11 September 2020 - 16:36
Mugello, FP2: Bottas continues to (...)

After topping the order in the opening practice session for this weekend’s first F1 Tuscan Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas continued to set the pace at Mugello in the afternoon, beating team-mate Lewis Hamilton by over two tenths of a second in a session that was twice interrupted by red flags.

Bottas led the way in the opening phase of the session, run largely on medium tyres and the Finn took P1 on the yellow banded tyres with a time of 1:18.019. The field then began to move to soft tyres for qualifying simulations when Lando Norris sent the field back to the pit lane when he went off at Turn 3, Poggio Secco.

The McLaren driver had started his quali sim when he went wide on the corner exit and slid through the gravel trap. He hit the barriers nose first, detaching the front wing, before coming to rest. Unable to get going again, his stoppage brought out the red flags.

The session resumed after almost 10-minutes and the Mercedes cars emerged on soft tyres for their qualifying runs. Bottas went quickest of all through the first two sectors as he held the top spot with a lap of 1:16.989. Hamilton was quickest in the final sector but the deficit across the first two sectors left him 0.207 behind his team-mate.

Max Verstappen took third place in the session and kept Mercedes honest by finishing just under four hundredths of a second behind Hamilton. The Dutchman’s team-mate Alex Albon was fourth, but the Thai driver was more than seven tenths of a second adrift of Verstappen.

Albon was, however, the last drive to get within a second of Bottas.

Renault took fifth and sixth in the session, with Daniel Ricciardo edging team-mate Esteban Ocon by a fraction under eight hundredths of a second. Ocon finished ahead of Racing Point’s Sergio Pérez, AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and the Alfa Rome of Kimi Räikkönen.

After Charles Leclerc opened the weekend of Ferrari’s 1000th race with a useful looking third place in the opening session, the afternoon was more muted for the Scuderia with Leclerc finishing in 10th position and Sebastian Vettel ending the session in P12.

The long runs in the second half of the session were interrupted by a second flag when Sergio Pérez and Kimi Räikkönen collided.

Räikkönen was starting lap when Pérez emerged from the pit lane. The Mexican seemed not to see the Finn and as they went into Turn 1 he clipped the rear of Räikkönen’s car as the Alfa Romeo driver turned in. Räikkönen was left beached in the gravel trap and the red flags were once again displayed.

Elsewhere, there was trouble for Romain Grosjean. The Frenchman completed just five laps in the session due to an electrical problem on his Haas car.

01 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes W11 1:16.989 28
02 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W11 1:17.196 29
03 Max Verstappen Red Bull Honda RB16 1:17.235 25
04 Alex Albon Red Bull Honda RB16 1:17.971 28
05 Daniel Ricciardo Renault RS20 1:18.039 32
06 Esteban Ocon Renault RS20 1:18.115 29
07 Sergio Perez Racing Point Mercedes RP20 1:18.198 34
08 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri Honda AT01 1:18.244 30
09 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39 1:18.385 38
10 Charles Leclerc Ferrari SF1000 1:18.400 27
11 Lance Stroll Racing Point Mercedes RP20 1:18.462 37
12 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF1000 1:18.498 39
13 Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault MCL35 1:18.651 32
14 Lando Norris McLaren Renault MCL35 1:18.658 9
15 Daniil Kvyat AlphaTauri Honda AT01 1:18.736 33
16 George Russell Williams Mercedes FW43 1:18.843 33
17 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39 1:18.944 35
18 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW43 1:18.983 31
19 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-20 1:19.113 32
20 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari VF-20 1:19.257 5

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