FP2: Leclerc goes fastest in second practice before hitting barrier
Charles Leclerc beat Max Verstappen to the quickest time in second practice for the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, however, his session ended early after he touched the wall.
The Monegasque, who went quickest in opening practice at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit, clocked a 1m 30.074s to finish 0.140s clear of Red Bull’s Verstappen.
But with 20 minutes to go, Leclerc hit the wall at Turn 4 and then backed off before limping back to the pits to allow his team to inspect his F1-75.
Verstappen’s best lap was set on the medium tyre, the Dutchman suffering a snap at Turn 2 on his first run, which forced him to back out of it.
His second run was then ruined by a Virtual Safety Car that was required after the Haas of Kevin Magnussen stopped out on track (below) with a suspected power unit issue.
FORMULA 1 STC SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX 2022
Saudi Arabia 2022
Practice 2 results
|1 Charles Leclerc LEC Ferrari||1:30.074|
|2 Max Verstappen VER Red Bull Racing||+0.140s|
|3 Carlos Sainz SAI Ferrari||+0.246s|
|4 Sergio Perez PER Red Bull Racing||+0.286s|
|5 Lewis Hamilton HAM Mercedes||+0.439s|
Carlos Sainz, who, like his Ferrari team mate, had a little kiss with the wall, was third quickest, with the second Red Bull of Sergio Perez fourth.
The Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and George Russell showed improved pace as the temperatures dropped and attention turned to performance in the most representative session of the day.
Hamilton, who asked for a seat change halfway through the session to help lift him higher in the car, was fifth and 0.439s off the pace, with team mate Russell a tenth of a second back in P6.
McLaren showed reasonable pace, with Lando Norris seventh after his soft tyre run – a fraction clear of eighth-place Esteban Ocon, who had the edge over Alpine team mate Fernando Alonso (P11) once more.
Valtteri Bottas was ninth for Alfa Romeo, while Yuki Tsunoda - who stopped out on track in the final few moments – was the best-placed AlphaTauri in 10th, the Italian team failing to repeat their impressive form in FP1 when conditions were warmer.
With Alonso ahead of Pierre Gasly, 12th, Mick Schumacher finished a solid 13th in the Haas. Lance Stroll was 14th for Aston Martin, with Daniel Ricciardo – who couldn’t get a lap in on the soft tyres, down in 15th for McLaren.
Nico Hulkenberg, standing in for Sebastian Vettel who is currently unavailable after testing positive for Covid-19, was 16th with rookie Zhou Guanyu 17th.
Nicholas Latifi edged out his Williams team mate Alex Albon for 18th, with Magnussen bringing up the rear, the Dane following up a hydraulic issue in FP1 with an engine problem in FP2.
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