Mercedes-AMG maintained its position at the top of the practice timesheets at the Italian Formula 1 Grand Prix, almost a second quicker than the rest of the field.
This time, however, it was Lewis Hamilton who was quicker than Valtteri Bottas, with the pair reversing their finishing order from FP1 where the Finn was fastest overall.
Hamilton’s fastest time, a 1:20.192, was over three-quarters of a second quicker than the best time of FP2 posted last year by Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. This fact highlighted not only how much Mercedes has improved as the frontrunning team of the season, but also how much Ferrari has slumped – Leclerc couldn’t even get this year’s Ferrari within half a second of his FP2 time from the year before…
Bottas finished second-fastest, just over a quarter of a second off Hamilton’s pace, while McLaren’s Lando Norris impressed to go third-fastest. The British youngster was impacted by power unit issues for much of the session, making his performance all the more eye-catching.
Having finished an unexpected fourth- and sixth-fastest in FP1, Scuderia AlphaTauri repeated the feat in the afternoon’s session. Pierre Gasly finished as the fastest Honda-powered runner in fourth-fastest, while his teammate Daniil Kvyat was seventh-quickest. The duo was split by Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen and McLaren’s Carlos Sainz Jr.
Both Racing Point Mercedes’ finished inside the top ten, with Lance Stroll P8 and teammate Sergio Pérez P10. The pair was separated by Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who gave the Italian team its first top-ten appearance in a practice session since the Spanish Grand Prix.
Track limits were very much a topic of focus during the session, with several runners exceeding the margins of the Parabolica and having their lap times deleted. Those to principally fall victim included Sebastian Vettel, Alexander Albon and Daniel Ricciardo, who all were stripped of their fastest laps.
Vettel’s struggles with the inconsistent handling of his Ferrari SF1000 continued into FP2; the German had a spin at the exit of Lesmo 1.
|FORMULA 1 GRAN PREMIO HEINEKEN D’ITALIA 2020 – FREE PRACTICE SESSION 2|
|Driver||Team / Entry||Time||Gap||Laps|
|1.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes-AMG F1 Team W11||1:20.192||32|
|2.||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes-AMG F1 Team W11||1:20.454||+ 0.262||29|
|3.||Lando Norris||McLaren F1 Team MCL35||1:21.089||+ 0.897||19|
|4.||Pierre Gasly||Scuderia AlfaTauri AT01||1:21.121||+ 0.929||25|
|5.||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing RB16||1:21.228||+ 1.036||30|
|6.||Carlos Sainz Jr.||McLaren F1 Team MCL35||1:21.313||+ 1.121||30|
|7.||Daniil Kvyat||Scuderia AlfaTauri AT01||1:21.376||+ 1.184||35|
|8.||Lance Stroll||Racing Point F1 Team RP20||1:21.389||+ 1.197||32|
|9.||Charles Leclerc||Scuderia Ferrari SF1000||1:21.503||+ 1.311||32|
|10.||Sergio Pérez||Racing Point F1 Team RP20||1:21.594||+ 1.402||31|
|11.||Esteban Ocon||Renault F1 Team R.S.20||1:21.697||+ 1.505||32|
|12.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari SF1000||1:21.733||+ 1.541||28|
|13.||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Racing C39||1:21.786||+ 1.594||32|
|14.||Alexander Albon||Red Bull Racing RB16||1:21.883||+ 1.691||36|
|15.||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault F1 Team R.S.20||1:22.080||+ 1.888||29|
|16.||Kevin Magnussen||Haas F1 Team VF-20||1:22.088||+ 1.896||32|
|17.||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo Racing C39||1:22.147||+ 1.955||34|
|18.||Romain Grosjean||Haas F1 Team VF-20||1:22.254||+ 2.062||34|
|19.||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Racing FW43||1:22.825||+ 2.633||32|
|20.||George Russell||Williams Racing FW43||1:22.927||+ 2.735||34|
Image via Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team
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