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Expected warmer weather ‘a bummer’, says Magnussen after Haas impress in cool FP2

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SAO PAULO, BRAZIL - NOVEMBER 15: Kevin Magnussen of Denmark driving the (20) Haas F1 Team VF-19

Kevin Magnussen’s Friday at a cold Interlagos was a bit of a tonic for the struggling Haas team, as the Dane ended up a fighting P6 in Free Practice 2, and within a second of Sebastian Vettel’s session-leading time for Ferrari. But with temperatures set to heat up over Saturday and Sunday, Magnussen was doubtful he could maintain that pace into the rest of the weekend...

Magnussen finished FP2 as ‘best of the rest’ in sixth, and cheeringly ahead of the Red Bull of Alex Albon, who wound up P9.

But despite enjoying what he called his best Friday since Monaco – where he’d ended up seventh after FP2 – Magnussen was wary about the warmer conditions currently forecast, given Haas’ struggles with tyre management this season.

FP2: Vettel leads Ferrari 1-2, as a tenth covers top 4 at Interlagos

I hope the cloud cover can stay and we can have some cool track temperatures as it definitely helps us

Kevin Magnussen

“I think we had a pretty decent Friday – we were P6 on low fuel in FP2,” said Magnussen. “That’s almost the best we’ve been all year, at least since Monaco, I think. That’s nice.

“It’s been very cold today and it’s not going to be cold on Sunday. The cold conditions help us, so that’s a bit of a bummer. I hope the cloud cover can stay and we can have some cool track temperatures as it definitely helps us. We’ll take it as it comes though.”

FP2: Grosjean and Gasly in wheel-to-wheel practice duel

A quick glance at the FP2 results appeared to reveal a starkly contrasting session for the two Haas drivers, as Grosjean ended up P16 to Magnussen's P6. But the shortness of the track at Interlagos meant that, despite the 10-place difference, Romain Grosjean’s best lap in FP2 was just 0.361s adrift of that of his team mate.

“It was very close today, very exciting,” said Grosjean. “We had a small issue on the car in FP2 unfortunately, we need to resolve that for tomorrow. We know what it is and we’re going to sort that out. Hopefully the car is better tomorrow.

“The qualifying pace was good today though, the race pace was alright. We’re expecting the track temperature to be a lot hotter on Sunday and that will change the picture a lot. We just need to make sure we work on that and don’t get surprised by the change of track temperature. Conditions were in our favour today. It’s going to change, but we’re going to try as hard as we can.”

READ MORE: Haas' 2019 'cursed' by botched pit stop in Australian opener, says Grosjean

Haas are looking to end their 2019 season on a high, having endured a tough year where they’ve scored in just five Grands Prix out of 19 so far – and only taken two points since the end of the summer break, for Magnussen’s ninth place in Russia.

logo 2019The constructors' standings pre-Brazil

PositionTeam NamePoints
1MercedesMercedes695
2FerrariFerrari479
3Red Bull RacingRed Bull Racing366
4McLarenMcLaren121
5RenaultRenault83
6Racing PointRacing Point65
7Toro RossoToro Rosso64
8Alfa Romeo RacingAlfa Romeo Racing35
9Haas F1 TeamHaas F1 Team28
10WilliamsWilliams1

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