FP2: Mercedes' Russell leads Leclerc in incident-filled Miami practice session
George Russell set the fastest time for Mercedes in FP2 for the 2022 Miami Grand Prix with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc second – his team mate Carlos Sainz having crashed out of the session before Max Verstappen bowed out.
Drivers began FP2 on medium compounds, track temperatures 10 degrees Celsius cooler than in FP1, with Sainz setting the early benchmark on those tyres (1m 31.463s), Leclerc 0.167s back in P3 – and between them the Red Bull of Sergio Perez, who spun at Turn 8 before setting his early flyer. That was all to change, of course.
Sainz then brought out the first red flag of the session, spinning and crashing into Turn 14 – the entry into the tight chicane – and ended his session in the wall with just over 40 minutes remaining, the stoppage leaving 31 minutes to play.
Five minutes later, Max Verstappen (no time set) was evidently struggling with his steering and then in the final sector, smoke was seen coming out of his rear brake ducts as he limped the RB18 back to the pits with a hydraulics issue.
Soft tyres coming into the fore, Russell then shot to the top in his upgraded W13 with a lap of 1m 29.938s – 0.106s faster than FP1 leader Leclerc.
FORMULA 1 CRYPTO.COM MIAMI GRAND PRIX 2022
United States 2022
Practice 2 results
|1 George Russell RUS Mercedes
|2 Charles Leclerc LEC Ferrari
|3 Sergio Perez PER Red Bull Racing
|4 Lewis Hamilton HAM Mercedes
|5 Fernando Alonso ALO Alpine
Perez took third for Red Bull, two-tenths off the pace, while Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton was P4 and 0.241s behind his team mate Russell – leaving Alpine driver Fernando Alonso to round out the top five (with a 0.434s gap to P1) as he looks to lead the midfield.
McLaren’s Lando Norris took P6, 0.597s down on Russell, with AlphaTauri driver Pierre Gasly a whisker behind in P7. Sole Alfa Romeo runner Zhou Guanyu took P8, his team mate Valtteri Bottas having sat out the session after his FP1 spin.
In ninth was Alpine’s Esteban Ocon, with Haas’s Kevin Magnussen rounding out the top 10 – the VF-22 this weekend bearing the name of owner Gene Haas’s late mother Margaret. Team mate Mick Schumacher was 15th in FP2, seven-tenths behind Magnussen.
In between the Haas drivers was McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo (P12), AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda (P13) and Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel (P14).
Having avoided the slowing Verstappen early on, Lance Stroll managed P16 for Aston Martin ahead of the Williams drivers: Alex Albon 17th and Nicholas Latifi 18th, the Canadian having brought out red flags having stopped at Turn 9 due to a loss of drive with 12 minutes left.
After spinning out of FP1, Bottas spent the session garage-bound as Alfa Romeo worked on his car. Verstappen – who had a new gearbox fitted to his car after a clash with the wall in FP1 – joined Bottas at the bottom of the timesheets after the Red Bull sprung an issue.
Next up in Miami we have Saturday’s FP3 and qualifying sessions. Head to the RACE HUB to see how and when you can catch the action – and see if Mercedes have indeed turned a corner in the Sunshine State...
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