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Spa, FP2: Verstappen quickest ahead of Ricciardo

In second practice in Belgium


By Olivier Ferret

28 August 2020 - 16:31
Spa, FP2: Verstappen quickest ahead (...)

Max Verstappen set the pace in the second practice session for the Belgian Grand Prix, though the Red Bull driver was just under five hundredths of a second ahead of surprise second-place man Daniel Ricciardo of Renault. Championship leader Lewis Hamilton finished third ahead of the second Red Bull of Alex Albon.

A damp track made for a quiet opening phase to the session but after 15 minutes Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi, who had missed the morning session due to a power unit water leak, posted the first time of the afternoon.

He then traded fastest times with teammate Kimi Raikkonen before Esteban Ocon, Alex Albon and Valtteri Bottas lowered the benchmark on medium-compound rubber with the Mercedes man Bottas posting a time of 1:44.658s.

Verstappen then took over at the top with a time of 1:44.354 also set on mediums and Hamilton slotted into second with a hard-tyre time 0.2s behind the Red Bull.

With a third of the session gone it was time for teams to make the move to qualifying simulations on soft tyres and Bottas moved back to the top spot with a lap of 1:44.134s, before Hamilton quickly dropped him to P2 with a a lap of 1:43.840s. Albon and Sergio Perez split the Mercedes pair but then Ricciardo sprung a surprise by taking P1 with a time of 1:43.792s.

However, Verstappen was soon back on track and he stole marginally ahead of his former team-mate with a lap of 1:43.744. Hamilton, dropped to third ahead of Albon, Pérez and Bottas.

Ricciardo’s good work was undone in the final quarter of an hour when he suddenly lost power as he went through Raidillon. He coasted to a halt with his team making a preliminary diagnosis of a loss of hydraulic pressure.

The session was then red flagged when an advertising board placed on the run down the endurance pits straight fell onto the circuit. The session soon resumed, however, and teams were able to complete their long-run work.

Behind Bottas, McLaren’s Lando Norris, finished seventh ahead of Renault’s Esteban Ocon, the second McLaren of Carlos Sainz and AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly.

It was a dismal day for Ferrari, however, with 2019 Belgian Grand Prix winner Charles Leclerc classified 15th, while Williams’ George Russell edged Sebastian Vettel to P17.

01 Max Verstappen Red Bull Honda RB16 1:43.744 21
02 Daniel Ricciardo Renault RS20 1:43.792 12
03 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W11 1:43.840 23
04 Alex Albon Red Bull Honda RB16 1:44.134 21
05 Sergio Perez Racing Point Mercedes RP20 1:44.137 23
06 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes W11 1:44.162 27
07 Lando Norris McLaren Renault MCL35 1:44.168 22
08 Esteban Ocon Renault RS20 1:44.208 23
09 Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault MCL35 1:44.474 23
10 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri Honda AT01 1:44.600 27
11 Lance Stroll Racing Point Mercedes RP20 1:44.678 23
12 Daniil Kvyat AlphaTauri Honda AT01 1:44.826 26
13 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39 1:44.861 29
14 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39 1:44.896 23
15 Charles Leclerc Ferrari SF1000 1:45.440 19
16 George Russell Williams Mercedes FW43 1:45.463 25
17 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF1000 1:45.683 21
18 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW43 1:45.774 26
19 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari VF-20 1:45.834 12
20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-20 1:46.242 12

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