Formula 1 |  Azerbaijan, EL2: Leclerc slips past Red Bull, Alonso 4th

Formula 1 | Azerbaijan, EL2: Leclerc slips past Red Bull, Alonso 4th

Azerbaijan, EL2: Leclerc slips (...)

Two hours after Free Practice 1, the 20 drivers returned to the Baku track for Free Practice 2 of the F1 Azerbaijan Grand Prix. The sun was still present but the temperatures dropped as the session progressed.

Lewis Hamilton set the first benchmark with a time of 1’46″295 on medium tyres. He was quickly beaten by Carlos Sainz in 1’45″118, still with the same tyres, while his team-mate was in a quick turn.

Charles Leclerc quickly improved to 1m43.806s, Fernando Alonso was second and Sergio Pérez and Guanyu Zhou came in ahead of Hamilton. AlphaTauri and Valtteri Bottas did the same, as did Esteban Ocon.

Pérez took second place and Hamilton showed some annoyance on the radio when his engineer told him he was 2.3 behind Leclerc. Sainz took second place and Max Verstappen signed his first time after a quarter of an hour of session, with the provisional sixth place.

The Red Bulls then came dangerously close to Leclerc, still in medium rubber, Verstappen going back 30 thousandths of a second from the Monegasque, while Pérez was placed just over a tenth of a second.

The rest of the session saw the Haas F1 drivers make one mistake each in the exits, before Pérez did it twice, at turns 1 and 15. Leclerc made a small mistake in turn, as did Lance Stroll, but no accident was to be deplored.

The Ferrari drivers then made an attempt on soft tyres, and Leclerc bettered his benchmark to 1’43.224. Sainz was also ahead but aborted his attempt in the final sector. long stints to test tire degradation.

Alex Albon touched the wall in an amazing way, in turn 17, inside this very fast curve. The right front wheel hub appeared to be broken on his Williams. Ocon meanwhile hit the wall with the left rear wheel.

Note that the race will take place at the time at which Free Practice 1 took place, and that Ferrari is the only team to have put on hard tires in the first session. Despite everything, it was the EL2s that were used to calibrate the resistance of the rubbers.

The lap times did not change and Leclerc kept his best time, ahead of the Red Bulls of Pérez and Verstappen, two and three tenths. Note that Leclerc’s Ferrari experienced some power loss at the end of the session, but the problem seems to have solved itself.

Alonso is fourth at nine tenths, and Sainz fifth at one second without however setting a time with the soft tyres. Pierre Gasly is sixth ahead of George Russell, Yuki Tsunoda, Ocon and Lando Norris.

Sebastian Vettel is 11th ahead of Hamilton, Lance Stroll, Daniel Ricciardo and the Alfa Romeos of Bottas and Zhou. The Haas and the Williams close the march, far from the lap times of the rest of the peloton.

pos. Pilot Car Time Towers
01 Charles Leclerc Ferrari F1-75 1:43.224 24
02 Sergio Perez Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:43.472 22
03 Max Verstappen Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:43.580 18
04 Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault A522 1:44.142 22
05 carlos sainz Ferrari F1-75 1:44.274 25
06 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:44.315 26
07 george russell Mercedes W13 1:44.548 26
08 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:44.567 24
09 Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault A522 1:44.609 24
10 Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:44.771 23
11 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:44.781 27
12 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W13 1:44.874 25
13 Lance Stroll Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:44.874 26
14 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:45.059 25
15 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:45.115 25
16 Guanyu-Zhou Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:45.264 24
17 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:45.588 26
18 Alex Albon Williams Mercedes FW44 1:46.397 13
19 Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:46.425 21
20 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW44 1:47.218 26

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