F1: Bottas Tops FP2


Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas once again topped the Friday practice session ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen.

The Austrian GP winner started off on the medium tyre as most drivers either went for the soft or supersoft. Mercedes split there morning strategies with Bottas on the Medium and Hamilton on the Soft.

Sebastian Vettel set the initial pace of a 1:29:850s with Daniel Ricciardo and Lewis Hamilton replacing the Championship leader as the times fell. When Bottas switched to the Supersoft tyre, he immediately went quicker on a 1:28:496s. Towards the end of the session, all drivers were on the Supersoft tyre except for Hamilton still on the Soft tyre.

Behind the two Mercedes, it was Kimi Raikkonen who had the better session than Vettel, beating the German to 3rd. Max Verstappen won the intra-team battle beating Daniel Ricciardo to 4th and 5th.

Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg finished best of the rest in 7th ahead of Williams Felipe Massa, McLaren’s Fernando Alonso and Force India’s Esteban Ocon.

It was a relatively good day for Alonso with the Spaniard running as high as 5th on the Supersoft tyre. Although, suspected grid penalties are set to hamper the two-time champion on Sunday.

The Toro Rosso’s of Carlos Sainz and Daniil Kvyat were just outside the top 10 ahead of Force India’s Sergio Perez, Haas’s Romain Grosjean and Williams Lance Stroll

Many drivers were caught out today due to the low track temperatures. Carlos Sainz fell victim first and spent most of the second practise session in the garage, reappearing later on. Jolyon Palmer, Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen also lost their cars with both spinning.   

Jolyon Palmer finished the session 18th and nearly a second behind teammate Hulkenberg. Palmer finished the session early due to a suspected clutch issue.