Max Verstappen 2, rest of grid 0. Formula 1 returned to Circuit Gilles Villeneuve early this Friday night (17) for the second free practice of the Canadian GP and saw the reigning world champion once again lead, as did in the initial session. Unlike the rain, Red Bull’s strength definitely showed up in Montreal.
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Ferrari, meanwhile, scratches its head to think about how to outrun the Taurus. Charles Leclerc, it is true, was closer to rival Verstappen in FP2: second position for the Monegasque, 0s081 behind the leader. Carlos Sainz completed the top-3 of the final F1 session this Friday.
And Sergio Perez? The Mexican didn’t do much on the Canadian track, but when he did, he didn’t show any relevant pace. 1min15s167 for ‘Checo’, 1s040 behind his teammate, good enough only for 11th place in the second free practice.
Who once again surprised was Sebastian Vettel, as well as Fernando Alonso. The two veterans continued the good momentum of FP1 and appeared in 4th and 5th on the timesheets, respectively. Pierre Gasly, George Russell, Lando Norris, Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon completed the top-10. Lewis Hamilton was only 13th, evidencing the persistent problems of the “unguilable” Mercedes with the bounces.
O BIG PRIZE accompanies all activities LIVE and IN REAL TIME. On Saturday, FP3 is scheduled for 14:00 (Brasília, GMT-3), while the classification starts at 17:00.
Check out how FP2 of the F1 Canadian GP went:
At the appointed time, at 18:00 (Brasília time), the cars took to the track for the last Friday activity of Formula 1 in Montreal. If there was a threat of rain, right away it was possible to say that we would not see water in FP2 – the sun was present at the beginning of the session at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
Even before any driver had set a fast lap, we already had the first relevant event of the second free practice in hand. That’s because, on the way out to the pits, Aston Martin released Sebastian Vettel from the garage ‘on top’ of Kevin Magnussen’s car, who complained via radio. The FIA promised to investigate.
In the three-minute session, only Lando Norris, Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell had yet to take to the track. The first two soon left, the Mercedes duo stayed. Meanwhile, Max Verstappen crossed the finish line in 1min15s618 on medium tyres, taking the provisional lead.
Soon, Sergio Pérez joined his teammate at the top of the timesheet, with 1min16s388. As in FP1, Red Bull started the second and final session of the day in a strong way. This was even more evident when the current world champion, still middleweight, lowered his own mark to 1min15s096.
Shortly after, the FOM broadcast showed interaction between Charles Leclerc and Ferrari. In the pit-lane, the Italian team asked the Monegasque to make two ‘snaps’ from the start. The pilot replied and said that he was not getting it, something was limiting the engine’s power. Answer: “that was the turbo problem”. It is worth remembering that Leclerc escaped punishment even with engine changes to Canada.
Meanwhile, Verstappen was still flying on the track. Not even the good time set by Leclerc was able to stop the Dutchman, who recorded 1min14s792 – still in middleweight – and put 0s496 ahead of the second place, which was precisely the Monegasque. Detail: Leclerc recorded time with soft compounds.
This exemplified Ferrari’s decision to adopt different strategies with its drivers at the start of FP2, as Carlos Sainz – who complained of worse bounces in his F1-75 compared to FP1 – was riding on the medium tire track.
On the timesheet, the passionate Fernando Alonso continued with impressive pace. The Alpine Spaniard clocked 1min15s125 and took Leclerc out of second position, behind only leader Verstappen.
The complaints of the bouncers followed. O porpoising ravaged not only Ferrari, which saw Sainz say again that “the dolphin’s swimming is very bad”, but also Mercedes (as usual): Russell indicated that the W13 jumped throughout the track, but even more so at Turn 9 .
The problems didn’t stop there. The FIA announced an investigation into Pierre Gasly after the session, as the AlphaTauri Frenchman escaped the last chicane and did not return to the track at the place previously determined by the FIA. Meanwhile, Valtteri Bottas accused his Alfa Romeo of failure and the team asked the Finn to return to the pits.
Just before the 30-minute mark of FP2, the virtual safety car was triggered. Accident? Not. A soda can was thrown onto the circuit when only Lance Stroll, Alexander Albon, Yuki Tsunoda and Sebastian Vettel were on the track. Tax in action and route released.
Green flag and Bottas tried to get back into action, but again his Alfa Romeo had a breakdown: a new return to the pits. Meanwhile, Red Bull put on soft tires on Verstappen’s RB18 and reaped the rewards of the decision shortly after: 1min14s127 for the Dutchman and an even more assured lead, with a mark 0s703 ahead of Leclerc.
But the Monegasque soon set the pace. On soft tyres, the third-placed driver in the Drivers’ Championship clocked 1min14s208 and was only 0s081 behind the Red Bull rival. The Taureans, it should be noted, only counted on Verstappen in the dispute against Ferrari in FP2: Sergio Pérez, 25 minutes from the end, was only in tenth place, 1s040 behind.
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Vettel, keeping up Aston Martin’s good momentum on Friday’s F1 in Canada, in fourth position, complained that something had come loose inside the English car at the last chicane. Going to the pits for the four-time world champion, while the track actions cooled down.
In the last minutes of FP2, little happened. Daniel Ricciardo and Guanyu Zhou had a falling out on the track, but not a big deal: the Chinese thought the Australian wasn’t coming around fast and didn’t give way, but the McLaren driver paid little attention and only mentioned “traffic” on the radio. Meanwhile, Red Bull informed Verstappen that it was raining only 30 minutes after the end of the session.
As usual, the final stretch was for teams to test race pace and perform data analysis. Alonso showed good speed in the sequence on hard tyres, while Bottas didn’t have that opportunity – failures on his Alfa Romeo prevented him from even scoring a quick lap. Of note, even, is Hamilton’s radio statement: “the car is unguided”. Work to do, Mercedes. Looking forward to the F1 Saturday in Canada.
F1 2022, Canadian GP, Montreal, FP2:
|1||M VERSTAPPEN||Red Bull Honda||1:14,127||32|
|4||S VETTEL||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:14,442||+0.315||34|
|6||P GASLY||AlphaTauri Honda||1:14,879||+0.752||33|
|8||L NORRIS||McLaren Mercedes||1:14,987||+0.860||30|
|11||S PEREZ||Red Bull Honda||1:15,167||+1,040||28|
|12||L STROL||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:15,396||+1,269||33|
|14||K MAGNUSEN||Haas Ferrari||1:15,499||+1,372||33|
|15||M SCHUMACHER||Haas Ferrari||1:15,516||+1,389||34|
|16||G ZHOU||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||1:15,526||+1,399||30|
|17||Y TSUNODA||AlphaTauri Honda||1:15,567||+1,440||37|
|19||N LATIFI||Williams Mercedes||1:16,509||+2,382||27|
|20||V BOOTS||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||two|
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