Verstappen Tops FP2 Despite Mechanical Issue


Max Verstappen doubled Red Bull Racing tally of session-topping times at Hockenheim by setting a new track record in second practice for the German Grand Prix.

The Dutchman posted a time of 1:13.085 on ultrasoft tyres to power past Michael Schumacher’s 2004 circuit record by 0.221s.

As with the morning session, in which team-mate Daniel Ricciardo was quickest ahead of Lewis Hamilton, Red Bull edged Mercedes by 0.004s, with Hamilton again taking place, this time just under three hundredths of a second off top spot.

Verstappen’s session wasn’t without issue, however, Around 25 minutes from the end of the 90 minutes of running the Red Bull driver slowed on track and reported that he was suffering with what sounded like a gearbox problem. He retreated to the pit lane where his team were able to remedy the problem and he did manage to rejoin the action with a few minutes left on the clock.

Third place in the session went to Valtteri Bottas in the second Mercedes. The Finn finished a tenth down on team-mate Hamilton and he was followed by the Ferraris of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Räikkönen. At the close of the session the top five drivers were covered by just 0.342s.

While Verstappen was busy setting the pace with his qualifying sim, FP1’s quickest driver, team-mate Daniel Ricciardo, finished a relatively lowly 13th as he concentrated on race set-up. The Australian is set to a number of power unit-related penalties on Sunday and will start the race from the back of the grid.

As in the morning, Haas were once again best of the rest behind the top three teams, with Romain Grosjean setting a best time of 1:13.973 to convert a morning deficit to Ricciardo of over a second into a 0.888 lag. Team-mate Kevin Magnussen finished 0.116s behind the Frenchman.

Charles Leclerc was eighth for Sauber with a time of 1:14.374, 1.289s off Verstappen’s pace, while Nico Hulkenberg was ninth for Renault ahead of Force India’s Esteban Ocon.

2018 Formula 1 German Grand Prix – Free Practice 2
1 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 18 1:13.085
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 39 1:13.111 0.026
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 39 1:13.190 0.105
4 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 46 1:13.310 0.225
5 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 41 1:13.427 0.342
6 Romain Grosjean Haas 34 1:13.973 0.888
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 36 1:14.189 1.104
8 Charles Leclerc Sauber 41 1:14.374 1.289
9 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 31 1:14.496 1.411
10 Esteban Ocon Force India 39 1:14.508 1.423
11 Sergio Perez Force India 38 1:14.552 1.467
12 Carlos Sainz Renault 43 1:14.592 1.507
13 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing 36 1:14.682 1.597
14 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 38 1:14.783 1.698
15 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso 44 1:14.793 1.708
16 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso 45 1:14.830 1.745
17 Fernando Alonso McLaren 38 1:14.836 1.751
18 Lance Stroll Williams 36 1:15.269 2.184
19 Sergey Sirotkin Williams 41 1:15.408 2.323
20 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 34 1:15.454 2.369

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