Lewis Hamilton has ended the opening day of running at the Brazilian Grand Prix on top of the timesheets after going quickest in today’s second practice session at the Sao Paulo’s Interlagos circuit. The 2008 Champion was closely pursued by the Red Bull pairing of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber.
With the afternoon’s session again occurring under sunny skies, Hamilton’s eventual 1:13.392 on a soft-tyre run was good enough to claim top spot on the timesheets, just 0.167 seconds fastest than Vettel, who was less than three-hundredths of a second quicker than team-mate Webber.
It was a closely-fought session overall, with just seven-tenths of a second splitting the top nine runners. Fernando Alonso finished mere fractions slower than Webber in fourth place, while Michael Schumacher managed to split the Ferraris and go fifth-fastest, one spot better than local hero Felipe Massa.
Jenson Button finished seventh-fastest, after being unable to improve his lap-time when he switched to the softer Pirelli rubber. He finished ahead of Nico Rosberg (Mercedes GP) and the two Force India runners of Adrian Sutil and Paul di Resta.
Interlagos has typically been one that highlights the strengths and shortcomings of the various cars, and its pattern of producing ‘Noah’s Ark’ style timesheets was on display again, as the teams wound up two-by-two from ninth place onwards.
Team Lotus’ near rear wing could be paying dividends, with Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen lapping just over half a second slower than the Williams runners (on aggregate), while they are comfortably ahead of the Virgin and HRT runners at the bottom of the timesheets.
2011 Brazilian Grand Prix – Free Practice 2 Session Times:
|1.||Lewis Hamilton||McLaren Mercedes MP4-26||1:13.392||35|
|2.||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Renault RB7||+ 0.167||41|
|3.||Mark Webber||Red Bull Renault RB7||+ 0.195||41|
|4.||Fernando Alonso||Ferrari F150° Italia||+ 0.206||35|
|5.||Michael Schumacher||Mercedes GP W02||+ 0.331||38|
|6.||Felipe Massa||Ferrari F150° Italia||+ 0.358||39|
|7.||Jenson Button||McLaren Mercedes MP4-26||+ 0.395||36|
|8.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes GP W02||+ 0.480||42|
|9.||Adrian Sutil||Force India Mercedes VJM04||+ 0.752||41|
|10.||Paul di Resta||Force India Mercedes VJM04||+ 1.415||48|
|11.||Vitaly Petrov||Renault R31||+ 1.464||38|
|12.||Bruno Senna||Renault R31||+ 1.539||37|
|13.||Sergio Pérez||Sauber Ferrari C30||+ 1.578||32|
|14.||Kamui Kobayashi||Sauber Ferrari C30||+ 1.627||45|
|15.||Sébastien Buemi||Toro Rosso Ferrari STR6||+ 1.872||44|
|16.||Jaime Alguersuari||Toro Rosso Ferrari STR6||+ 1.996||41|
|17.||Pastor Maldonado||Williams Cosworth FW33||+ 2.287||43|
|18.||Rubens Barrichello||Williams Cosworth FW33||+ 2.511||40|
|19.||Jarno Trulli||Lotus Renault T128||+ 2.906||36|
|20.||Heikki Kovalainen||Lotus Renault T128||+ 2.946||48|
|21.||Jérôme d’Ambrosio||Virgin Racing Cosworth MVR-02||+ 4.639||39|
|22.||Timo Glock||Virgin Racing Cosworth MVR-02||+ 4.659||45|
|23.||Daniel Ricciardo||HRT F1 Cosworth F111||+ 4.975||42|
|24.||Vitantonio Liuzzi||HRT F1 Cosworth F111||+ 5.084||42|
[Image via LAT]