Mercedes topped the standings once again when reigning Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton set the fastest time in the second practice session for the Formula One Spanish Grand Prix, beating his teammate Valtteri Bottas. .
The British Mercedes driver finished .287 seconds ahead of Bottas, who had dominated the first session, just ahead of Hamilton. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen again looked like the only driver capable of challenging the dominant Mercedes duo by placing third in both sessions of the day, closing the gap slightly in the afternoon.
In the morning session, Bottas was .039 seconds faster than championship-leading Hamilton and about a second better than Red Bull’s Verstappen, who ranked second over Bottas in the standings after winning the race. last Sunday at Silverstone.
With a higher temperature on the circuit under the Spanish afternoon sun and 30 minutes after the second session started, the Mercedes tires began to show their wear.
The heat at Silverstone played against Mercedes last Sunday, when both of their drivers also faced tire problems.
In the first practice there was an encouraging improvement for Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who took fifth place, behind teammate Charles Leclerc. Ferrari changed the chassis of Vettel’s car after a deplorable performance.
However, in the afternoon session Leclerc fell to sixth place and Vettel to a disappointing 12th.
On the contrary, it was a good afternoon for the Renault team, with Daniel Ricciardo scoring the fourth fastest time taking advantage of the Ferrari debacle at the circuit located on the outskirts of Barcelona.
Sergio Pérez was seventh in the first session and eighth in the second for Racing Point after recovering from coronavirus and testing negative. The virus forced the Mexican driver to miss the last two races at Silverstone after contracting it last month.
The authorities of the International Automobile Federation (FIA) authorized his return to the tracks. AP (HN)