Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Circuit de Catalunya, 2018

Vettel leads for Ferrari as Hamilton misses day two of testing

2018 F1 season

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Mercedes were kept from the top of the times sheets for the second day running as Ferrari led the way at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Sebastian Vettel, driving his first full day at the wheel of the SF71H, set the quickest time of the test so far with a 1’19.673, some three-tenths of a second faster than Valtteri Bottas. Vettel also caused a brief red flag with a spin at turn two.

Esteban Ocon, Force India, Circuit de Catalunya, 2018
2018 F1 pre-season testing day two in pictures
Very cold conditions at the start of the test meant few drivers ventured out early on. The track temperature eventually warmed up slightly but it remained chilly enough for a brief snow flurry later in the running.

Mercedes began the day intending to run Lewis Hamilton in the afternoon session. However after the lunch break was cancelled to allow for extra running the team said it had decided to take full advantage of the opportunity rather than lose time converting the car to his specification and kept Bottas in the car.

An early run on hyper-softs moved Stoffel Vandoorne’s McLaren up to third overall but he was only able to complete 37 laps. The car spent most of the afternoon in the garage.

Williams stuck to its plan of splitting the day between its two drivers. Robert Kubica took over from Sergey Sirotkin in the afternoon and ended up the quicker of the two by three-tenths of a second.

Pos.Car numberDriverTeamModelBest timeGapLapsTyres
15Sebastian VettelFerrariSF71H1’19.67398Soft
277Valtteri BottasMercedesW091’19.9760.30394Medium
32Stoffel VandoorneMcLarenMCL331’20.3250.65237Hyper-soft
433Max VerstappenRed BullRB141’20.3260.65367Medium
555Carlos Sainz JnrRenaultRS181’21.2121.53965Soft
610Pierre GaslyToro RossoSTR131’21.3181.64582Soft
740Robert KubicaWilliamsFW411’21.4951.82248Soft
835Sergey SirotkinWilliamsFW411’21.8222.14952Soft
931Esteban OconForce IndiaVJM111’21.8412.16879Soft
1016Charles LeclercSauberC371’22.7213.04881Soft
1120Kevin MagnussenHaasVF-181’22.7273.05436Soft

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2018 F1 season

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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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  • 22 comments on “Vettel leads for Ferrari as Hamilton misses day two of testing”

    1. Worrying signals from McLaren in these two days.

      1. Or just sandbagging, but i’m afraid it’s very worrying, their exhaust is also damaging

      2. They are not used to long testing sessions… but there’s no Honda to blame now.

        1. but there is Alonso

        2. On the other hand… Honda is doing pretty damn good so far.

    2. Vettel fan 17 (@)
      27th February 2018, 17:10

      Does anyone know what tyre Vettel was on? I know Bottas was on softs

      1. Vettel was on the soft, while Bottas was on medium.

      2. Vettel was on softs…

      3. Bottas -> medium
        Vettel -> soft

      4. Vettel was on softs and Bottas was on mediums according to Autosport’s timing.

    3. Snow’s always a good leveller.

    4. Still find it so very humorous how many laps Toro Rosso have managed to get under its belt xD

    5. probably one of the most meaningless test weeks in years.

      Hope it warms up soon to get some half decent running

      1. It is expected to start getting warmer as from Thursday.

      2. Well, not this week.

    6. Since it was snowing, Ferrari should have put Kimi in the car; finns are great on snow.

    7. McLaren going for a glory run on the hyper softs to deflect a little bit of the bad press of two car problems in two days, I think…

    8. The image of an F1 race in the snow is too good. I remember when Verstappen did an awesome RB demo in the in snow:

      If Liberty did that, it would get the biggest F1 TV audience in history.

      1. It had been done before several times :)

        But look at this – “Single seater driven around Nurburgring Nordschleife in the snow!”:

        1. @damon

          What a great find. Some serious skill displayed by the driver. I’ve never seen so man steering corrections on a straight… Lol

    9. It’s harder than usual to read in to testing times this week, due to the terrible track conditions, however, at the front of the field, the start to testing seems really similar to last year’s. Both Ferrari and Mercedes putting up the fastest times and the most mileage. Red Bull seem slightly better than last year, at least reliability-wise.

      If I had to make early predictions, I don’t think it will be a lot different to last year’s start of the season. Mercedes and Ferrari will still be fighting for the wins, with Red Bull hot on the heels of the underperforming Ferrari and Mercedes drivers.

      What will be interesting though is the midfield battle. I think we’d need around 3 to 4 proper days of testing to figure out who the real contenders for that 4th spot are.

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