Daniil Kvyat led both Mercedes drivers of Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton in another rain-affected second practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix.
The session started with a drying track which allowed drivers to take to the circuit with the intermediate tyres, although Rosberg was the only one to keep with the full wets.
Kvyat was the first one out and the first to set a lap time of 1:49.374 which was too good for Kimi Räikkönen’s first attempt; the Finn posted a lap time just under a second slower. Late in the session, Kvyat returned to the top of the timesheets, posting a 1:48.277 to go 0.023 seconds quicker than the session’s provisional pace-setter, Rosberg.
Daniel Ricciardo had much more running this session, placing his Red Bull Racing Renault in fourth position after not having set a time in the previous session to save engine mileage. Ricciardo was 0.8 seconds slower than his teammate’s best time, although he finished over a second quicker than the Ferrari pair of Sebastian Vettel and Räikkönen in fifth and sixth place respectively.
The track saw a steady amount of action in the first half of practice from most of the drivers aside from Williams’ Valtteri Bottas, who was saving his wet tyres for the rest of the weekend and didn’t go out at all.
Fernando Alonso encountered technical issues with his Honda engine early on. He, however, was able to get out in the latter stages of the session to complete 10 laps.
Toro Rosso made a slow start to the session, with both drivers encountering separate problems. Max Verstappen was sidelined for the first 30 minutes of the session due to a screw that went missing in the engine bay; FP1 pace setter Carlos Sainz reported a weird noise coming from his engine. Sainz and Verstappen eventually got their troubles sorted out and finished the session seventh and eighth fastest respectively.
With just over half of the session left to run, the rain returned and the track action came to a halt, as no driver wanted to risk damaging their car to gain data that won’t be relevant, as the outlook for the rest of the weekend appears to be dry.
Rosberg, Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso were the only drivers left on the track towards the end of the session on the full wet tyres. Despite not being able to learn much from a wet track, certain mechanical data could be gained so the teams could focus on other areas of development in FP3 tomorrow.
|2015 Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix – Free Practice 2 Results|
|Pos||Driver||Team / Entry||Time||Gap||Laps|
|1.||Daniil Kvyat||Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB11||1:48.277||6|
|2.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W06 Hybrid||1:48.300||+ 0.023||8|
|3.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W06 Hybrid||1:48.853||+ 0.576||8|
|4.||Daniel Ricciardo||Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB11||1:49.097||+ 0.820||10|
|5.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T||1:50.268||+ 1.991||19|
|6.||Kimi Räikkönen||Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T||1:50.319||+ 2.042||16|
|7.||Carlos Sainz||Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR10||1:50.418||+ 2.141||6|
|8.||Max Verstappen||Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR10||1:50.542||+ 2.265||5|
|9.||Felipe Nasr||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C34||1:50.968||+ 2.691||10|
|10.||Pastor Maldonado||Lotus F1 Team Mercedes E23 Hybrid||1:51.557||+ 3.280||7|
|11.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM08B||1:51.674||+ 3.397||11|
|12.||Jenson Button||McLaren Honda MP4-30||1:51.861||+ 3.584||9|
|13.||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C34||1:51.934||+ 3.657||12|
|14.||Sergio Pérez||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM08B||1:52.070||+ 3.793||8|
|15.||Romain Grosjean||Lotus F1 Team Mercedes E23 Hybrid||1:52.534||+ 4.257||6|
|16.||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW37||1:52.765||+ 4.488||6|
|17.||Fernando Alonso||McLaren Honda MP4-30||1:55.239||+ 6.962||10|
|18.||Will Stevens||Manor Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03B||1:58.059||+ 9.782||6|
|19.||Alexander Rossi||Manor Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03B||1:59.419||+ 11.142||11|
|20.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW37||no time||0|
Image via Red Bull Content Pool