Sebastian Vettel put his Ferrari on top of the time sheets on Friday afternoon as he edged out the Mercedes pair of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg in the second Free Practice session of the Mexican GP.
The German set a 1:19.790 on the Super Soft compound, just 0.004 ahead of Hamilton, who led the way in FP1 and managed to cut the gap to Vettel in FP2 despite being hindered early in the session as he looked to run over a bird after running wide at Moisés Solana.
Nico Rosberg managed 3rd fastest ahead of Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo in fourth and fifth. The Finn was a close match to Rosberg as he was only 0.034s behind, while Ricciardo came a further 2 tenths back.
Behind them was Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg who continued his team’s strong showing from FP1 by setting the sixth fastest time on the Soft compound, himself and teammate Sergio Perez -who was 15th fastest- being the only drivers to post their fastest time on the yellow-marked Softs and only use the Soft and Medium compounds during this session.
Max Verstappen came seventh fastest ahead of Valtteri Bottas who again came in the top 10, an unusual feat on Friday for his Williams team while Carlos Sainz and Fernando Alonso rounded up the top 10 in ninth and tenth, the McLaren driver being the last victim of Vettel’s radio rants when he was labelled by the German “a f***ing idiot” after failing to move out of his way.
Daniil Kvyat, Jenson Button and Felipe Massa came 11th, 12th and 13th respectively, Kvyat’s Toro Rosso losing power just before the pit lane entry after the session had ended.
Renault came 14th and 16th with Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer sandwiching Sergio Perez in 15th while an impressive Pascal Wehrlein came in 17th in the Manor ahead of both Saubers of Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr, the Brazilian recovering from a front wing failure in FP1.
Romain Grosjean had a long delay due to an electrical problem and came 20th fastest ahead of Manor’s Esteban Ocon and the other Haas of Esteban Gutierrez.
Free Practice 3 gets underway at 10:00 local timing (GMT -5)
Image via XPB Images