Ferrari show good race pace in second practice (FP2 interactive data)

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Ferrari appear to have the race pace to back up the one-lap performance they showed in the second practice session in Valancia.

Red Bull are close behind but McLaren didn’t exhibit the same performance they had in the first session – in terms of straight-line speed or lap time.

Here’s the interactive data for the second practice session at Valencia.

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Tick/untick drivers’ names to show their laps, click and drag to zoom

Familiar patterns were clear to see in the second practice session at Valencia. After early running on the medium tyre most drivers sampled the super-soft around halfway through the session.

They generally improved only slightly on the super-soft tyres. As more rubber goes down on the surface they will probably find those tyres give better grip.

At the end of the session they switched back to the medium tyre for race simulation on high fuel loads. These laps were around three seconds slower than the best times of the session, but it’s interesting to note that Fernando Alonso had the quickest lap of the times posted in the last quarter of an hour:

Best times from the final 15 minutes of FP2

Pos. Car Driver Car Best lap
1 8 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’42.682
2 6 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’43.176 0.494
3 14 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’43.204 0.522
4 3 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’43.234 0.552
5 11 Robert Kubica Renault 1’43.288 0.606
6 5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’43.377 0.695
7 17 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’43.449 0.767
8 7 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’43.513 0.831
9 2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1’43.566 0.884
10 4 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’43.646 0.964
11 12 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’43.706 1.024
12 15 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1’43.865 1.183
13 1 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’44.078 1.396
14 16 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’44.124 1.442
15 9 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1’44.162 1.48
16 10 Nico Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1’44.348 1.666
17 23 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1’44.789 2.107
18 22 Pedro de la Rosa Sauber-Ferrari 1’45.189 2.507
19 19 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1’45.433 2.751
20 18 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1’46.168 3.486
21 25 Lucas di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1’46.382 3.7
22 20 Karun Chandhok HRT-Cosworth 1’47.187 4.505
23 21 Bruno Senna HRT-Cosworth 1’47.499 4.817

There was a lot of traffic on track at this point which may distort the picture slightly. Sebastian Vettel was able to keep pace with Alonso to begin with but not in the final few laps.

Lewis Hamilton wasn’t far off Alonso’s pace either but we saw him lose time behind Michael Schumacher at the end of the session.

Of course it’s always possible that some drivers and teams were running higher than average fuel loads. Jenson Button seems a likely candidate, as his times were consistently around a second off Alonso’s.

But even taking all this into account it’s an encouraging sign for Ferrari who previously have tended not to be the fastest team at this stage in a weekend.

Examining the ‘ultimate laps’ (the times each driver would have done had he set his best three sectors on the same lap) confirms the impression that Ferrari have got on terms with Red Bull this weekend. Alonso’s ultimate lap was a 1’39.082, Vettel had a 1’39.213 and Webber 1’39.255.

As expected Red Bull were the fastest cars in the final sector which contains all of the track’s few high-speed corner. They will decide later tonight whether they’re going to run their F-duct throughout the rest of the weekend.

McLaren may have been pursuing different set-up options. Their cars were 2kph slower through the speed trap than they had been this morning, suggesting they may have increased their wing angles.

But Hamilton feels Ferrari have found an advantage by getting their version of Red Bull’s ‘blown diffuser’ on their car before McLaren:

It was always going to be interesting to see how quickly the blown-diffuser cars could get up to speed – and they looked very competitive this afternoon, particularly over a single lap. And the grip they appear to have through the high-speed stuff could make them difficult for us to touch.
Lewis Hamilton

Lotus’s hopes of out-qualifying a midfield team on pure pace ahead of their 500th Grand Prix start appear to be slim as they’ve been around a second off the pack so far.

Timo Glock’s session ended when his car broke down, but at that point he was within two tenths of a second of Heikki Kovalainen.

HRT F1 endured a series of problems in their second home race. Karun Chandhok had a hydraulic failure while completing his fastest lap. That followed a gearbox failure for Christian Klien in the first session and a drive boot failure for Bruno Senna at the same time.

Pos. Car Driver Car Best lap Gap Lap At time Laps
1 8 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’39.283 18 59 33
2 5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’39.339 0.056 18 67 27
3 6 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’39.427 0.144 16 62 29
4 4 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’39.650 0.367 9 45 22
5 2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1’39.749 0.466 12 57 24
6 11 Robert Kubica Renault 1’39.880 0.597 12 44 28
7 7 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’39.947 0.664 12 66 22
8 14 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’40.020 0.737 9 19 30
9 1 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’40.029 0.746 15 56 27
10 9 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1’40.174 0.891 27 74 33
11 3 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’40.287 1.004 7 42 24
12 15 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1’40.387 1.104 22 63 33
13 12 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’40.618 1.335 12 44 29
14 23 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1’40.906 1.623 24 67 34
15 22 Pedro de la Rosa Sauber-Ferrari 1’40.945 1.662 23 71 30
16 16 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’41.115 1.832 7 17 35
17 10 Nico Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1’41.371 2.088 16 59 30
18 17 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’41.457 2.174 7 19 36
19 19 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1’42.467 3.184 21 65 31
20 18 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1’42.993 3.710 18 62 30
21 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1’43.811 4.528 7 16 14
22 25 Lucas di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1’43.854 4.571 18 68 27
23 21 Bruno Senna HRT-Cosworth 1’44.095 4.812 14 60 24
24 20 Karun Chandhok HRT-Cosworth 1’44.566 5.283 15 67 21

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    11 comments on “Ferrari show good race pace in second practice (FP2 interactive data)”

    1. Ferrari are back in the game with Red Bull, Mclaren are right up there too…with Mercedes consistently closing in through…..its going to be a cracker…..I really cant predict now

      1. i dont know why is mclaren whining about the blown diffuser they have a huge straigh line advantage cause of their fantastic f-duct

        1. its almost as if all teams have been handicaped i still dont understand the fia rule about holes on the chassis

        2. @miguelF!: Where are McLaren ‘whining’? A comment on the potential of your competitor(s) does not constitute whining.

          Also, if you don’t understand the advantage a leading diffuser setup would give you over a so called ‘f-duct’ then you don’t understand the way either of them work.

          1. Exactly. I think i heard Red Bull talking about the McLarens being quick or Ferrari working their tyres very well at several events this year before they went on to get a 1-2 in qualifying.

            Talking up your opponents chances and talking down your own is usually a sign of being pretty confident your there (or just admitting your completely out of it, but that certainly is not the case with McLaren here).

    2. hopefully Ferrari is back!

    3. I think Ferrari will be great this weekend, but if McLarens’ updates for the British GP work as well, they will be behind them again.

      1. the problem is that mclaren is not going to surpass redbull

    4. Yes, it seems that Ferrari is back. But I think it might be early to draw conclusions and more about it. Red Bull continues to be strong, I am suspicious that Alonso’s return was for effect or tires or low fuel. Because after the rest of the session he did not walk at that level.

      But at least as much as Alonso and Massa were optimistic able …

      hugs to all

    5. wow, that new ferrari is a hell of a thing, fully loaded with wingdings, doodads, and the new big thing part 2

    6. I think it will be McLaren with Lewis up front. Alonso close behind and one of the Red Bulls having a good shot at pole again as well, i think Vettel but Webber might do it as well.
      But i don’t count out Button, as he did tend to take a little more time to get up to speed this year and Massa might go far as well here. Rosberg might be in the hunt for p3, but probably not.

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