Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, Yas Marina, 2018

Bottas leads close second practice session

2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix second practice

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Last year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix winner Valtteri Bottas headed the second practice session today for Mercedes but there was little to choose between the top teams.

Bottas was less than five-hundredths of a second faster than Max Verstappen after their qualifying simulation runs on the hyper-soft tyres. Ricciardo backed up his team mate in third place, just under two-tenths off Bottas.

Lewis Hamilton, who is still running the power unit which caused him trouble in Brazil, was fractionally slower than Ricciardo in fourth. However Hamilton is also under investigation for committing an infringement in first practice when he crossed the white line at the pit entrance.

Fifth-placed Kimi Raikkonen was just three-hundredths of a second off Ricciardo, meaning just 0.225s covered the top three teams. Sebastian Vettel was a tenth behind in sixth, followed by a gap of nearly half a second to the midfield. Both Ferraris lost much of their time in the final sector of the lap.

Haas put in a strong showing with Romain Grosjean, seventh, leading the midfield, and Kevin Magnussen in ninth, sandwiching Nico Hulkenberg’s Renault. Esteban Ocon completed the top 10.

Pierre Gasly was the quicker of the Toro Rosso drivers in 11th place. However the Williams pair were rooted to the bottom of the times at the end of their final Friday with the team.

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Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
177Valtteri BottasMercedes1’37.23637
233Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’37.2800.04432
33Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’37.4280.19231
444Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’37.4430.20735
57Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’37.4610.22540
65Sebastian VettelFerrari1’37.5690.33339
78Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’38.0600.82430
827Nico HulkenbergRenault1’38.2300.99436
920Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’38.3181.08230
1031Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’38.4021.16633
1110Pierre GaslyToro Rosso-Honda1’38.5061.27032
1255Carlos Sainz JnrRenault1’38.5111.27537
1314Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Renault1’38.7251.48935
1411Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’38.8061.57031
1516Charles LeclercSauber-Ferrari1’38.8311.59533
1628Brendon HartleyToro Rosso-Honda1’38.9571.72135
179Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’39.5022.26636
182Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Renault1’39.9382.70218
1918Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’40.0462.81033
2035Sergey SirotkinWilliams-Mercedes1’40.9353.69939

Second practice visual gaps

Valtteri Bottas – 1’37.236

+0.044 Max Verstappen – 1’37.280

+0.192 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’37.428

+0.207 Lewis Hamilton – 1’37.443

+0.225 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’37.461

+0.333 Sebastian Vettel – 1’37.569

+0.824 Romain Grosjean – 1’38.060

+0.994 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’38.230

+1.082 Kevin Magnussen – 1’38.318

+1.166 Esteban Ocon – 1’38.402

+1.270 Pierre Gasly – 1’38.506

+1.275 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’38.511

+1.489 Fernando Alonso – 1’38.725

+1.570 Sergio Perez – 1’38.806

+1.595 Charles Leclerc – 1’38.831

+1.721 Brendon Hartley – 1’38.957

+2.266 Marcus Ericsson – 1’39.502

+2.702 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’39.938

+2.810 Lance Stroll – 1’40.046

+3.699 Sergey Sirotkin – 1’40.935

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

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2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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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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12 comments on “Bottas leads close second practice session”

  1. Still, a second off the pace of last season’s pole time.

    1. @jerejj I think it would be better to compare today’s lap times with the fastest FP2 time last year. I don’t remember what it was, though…

      Although, interestingly enough, last season’s F1.5 pole time (1:38.282 by Hulkenberg) has already been beaten by both Hulk and Grosjean. Hulk set a faster lap in Q2 i.e. a 1:38.138, but Grosjean’s time is good enough to beat that as well. I think the top teams are holding back a bit. There’s no way the gap between them and the midfield is a mere 0.8 seconds when Hulk was 2 seconds off the pace in qualy last year and the average gap has been quite a bit over a second for longer circuits this season. I think the lap record will most definitely be broken come Saturday, given that the teams usually find well over a second worth of lap time from FP2 to Q3.

      1. @neutronstar Yes indeed in all likelihood it’s going to get beaten, but I was expecting it to get beaten in FP2 already, or at least very close to it.

  2. Will be another great F1.5 race with the top 10 within a second.

    check our more detail via

    1. I have been looking for this @coldfly for quite some time (and I never remember to check reddit).
      Finally I can see the detailed results of F1.5 … to bad I only find it in the last GP of the season…

  3. Why are they so much than last season?

    1. @db01 So much what? Sexier? Heavier? More sympathetic? The suspense is killing me!

      1. @mashiat My guess is ‘more evil’, but I hope @db01 clears this up asap.

        1. Suppose slower!

          1. Hahaha, points go to @esploratore!
            I can’t believe I missed out the most important word in the sentence there :D

  4. I expect that the hypersofts will fall off towards the end of the quali lap, and that the tyres won’t be very sustainable in the race. There’s a real chance that Red Bull will win again here (although I might be eating my words by Sunday evening)

  5. Watch Ocon. He will start one lap later and then pass everybody in the last 10 laps. ;-)

Comments are closed.