Norris leads Verstappen in FP2 at Zandvoort after Piastri and Ricciardo crash out
Lando Norris edged out Max Verstappen to set the pace during Friday’s second practice session for the Dutch Grand Prix, which was red-flagged in the early stages following an unusual double crash involving team mate Oscar Piastri and Daniel Ricciardo.
Just under 10 minutes into the one-hour outing around the twisty Zandvoort circuit, Piastri dramatically lost control of his McLaren exiting Turn 2 and slid into the barriers on the outside of the banked Turn 3, causing significant front-end damage.
Moments after Piastri’s shunt, returning AlphaTauri driver Ricciardo approached the section at full speed and, with his fellow Australian sitting in the middle of the racing line, there was nothing he could do to avoid hitting the wall himself.
Neither driver could make it back to the pits, meaning their sessions were over there and then, with further concern surrounding Ricciardo as replays showed his hands being thrown around in the cockpit due to him still holding the steering wheel upon impact.
FORMULA 1 HEINEKEN DUTCH GRAND PRIX 2023
Practice 2 results
|1 Lando Norris NOR McLaren||1:11.330|
|2 Max Verstappen VER Red Bull Racing||+0.023s|
|3 Alexander Albon ALB Williams||+0.269s|
|4 Lewis Hamilton HAM Mercedes||+0.308s|
|5 Yuki Tsunoda TSU AlphaTauri||+0.390s|
After the mess was cleared up, drivers made the switch to the soft compound tyre and times began to tumble, with the impressive Norris stepping forward to set the benchmark on a 1m 11.330s – a lap strong enough to keep P1 despite two efforts from home favourite Verstappen.
Verstappen wound up 0.023s adrift, having survived a snap exiting Turn 3 on his first soft-shod effort and then complained over the radio that his RB19 was doing “some weird things” in the medium-speed corners.
Alex Albon was a high-flying third for Williams, finishing a couple of tenths further back, with Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda and Alpine’s Pierre Gasly ensuring that six different teams filled the top six positions.
Seventh went to the other Red Bull of Sergio Perez, who lapped almost half a second slower than team mate Verstappen, with Lance Stroll eighth in his Aston Martin after bouncing back from a power unit issue aboard his Aston Martin in FP1.
Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso rounded out the top 10, with both Ferraris absent from the leading half of the field as Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finished a low-key 11th and 16th respectively, via a couple of trips through the gravel for the Spaniard.
Williams rookie Logan Sargeant placed 12th, pipping the Alpine of Esteban Ocon, Mercedes of George Russell and Alfa Romeo of Zhou Guanyu, with newly re-signed Haas pair Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg 17th and 18th – the latter frustrating Verstappen by getting in his way early on.
Piastri and Ricciardo brought up the rear without representative lap times following their early crashes, which will leave McLaren and AlphaTauri with work to do overnight to make repairs for final practice on Saturday morning.
Drivers and teams will now regroup and dig through the data before returning to the track for that aforementioned FP3 session at 1130 local time on Saturday, with the all-important qualifying hour scheduled for 1500.