George Russell, Mercedes, Imola, 2022

Russell fastest for Mercedes in dry final practice session at Imola

2022 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix second practice

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George Russell used soft tyres to set the fastest time of the second and final practice session for the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix.

Russell was less than a tenth of a second faster than Sergio Perez, who set his fastest time on the medium tyres. Charles Leclerc was third fastest, while sprint race pole winner Max Verstappen was seventh.

After the rain on Friday, teams were greeted with a dry track for the second and final practice session of the weekend.

As the field quickly took to the track to gather as much data as possible, Daniel Ricciardo was prevented from taking to the track due to a problem on his McLaren. Valtteri Bottas was also forced to wait, while the Alfa Romeo mechanics continued to work of his car following his technical problem that ended his Friday qualifying.

Red Bull took to the soft tyres early, with Perez fastest from team mate Verstappen. Other teams opted for longer runs on the medium tyres ahead of the sprint race later in the afternoon, with Lewis Hamilton moving into second in the times behind Perez.

After Ricciardo was delayed, Lando Norris was also prevented from going back out onto the circuit after only six laps, the team having discovered a brake problem on the other McLaren after its first run.

Russell used soft tyres to set the fastest time of a 1’19.790, three tenths of a second quicker than Perez. The Red Bull driver then improved his time to get within a tenth of the Mercedes, albeit on the medium compound tyres, while Leclerc went third fastest in the Ferrari.

None of the top 10 improved their times in the final minutes, leaving Russell fastest overall at the chequered. Perez ended the session in second, with Leclerc third. Hamilton finished the session in fourth, with Fernando Alonso fifth.

Carlos Sainz Jnr was sixth in the second Ferrari with sprint race pole sitter Max Verstappen in seventh. Neither Ricciardo nor Valtteri Bottas were able to take to the track in the session.

2022 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix second practice result

163George RussellMercedesW131’19.45732
211Sergio PerezRed BullRB181’19.5380.08133
316Charles LeclercFerrariF1-751’19.7400.28335
444Lewis HamiltonMercedesW131’19.9920.53534
514Fernando AlonsoAlpine-RenaultA5221’20.1740.71729
655Carlos Sainz JnrFerrariF1-751’20.2580.80131
71Max VerstappenRed BullRB181’20.3710.91436
822Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri-Red BullAT031’20.3810.92435
910Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Red BullAT031’20.4390.98237
1024Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo-FerrariC421’20.4981.04132
1123Alexander AlbonWilliams-MercedesFW441’20.5911.13434
1220Kevin MagnussenHaas-FerrariVF-221’20.7401.28330
1347Mick SchumacherHaas-FerrariVF-221’20.9771.52029
1418Lance StrollAston Martin-MercedesAMR221’21.1491.69238
155Sebastian VettelAston Martin-MercedesAMR221’21.1551.69838
1631Esteban OconAlpine-RenaultA5221’21.1791.72230
176Nicholas LatifiWilliams-MercedesFW441’21.2631.80631
184Lando NorrisMcLaren-MercedesMCL361’23.8214.3646
193Daniel RicciardoMcLaren-MercedesMCL36No time0
2077Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo-FerrariC42No time0

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2022 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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14 comments on “Russell fastest for Mercedes in dry final practice session at Imola”

  1. Another pretty redundant Sprint event Saturday practice.

    1. @jerejj It’s like these sprint weekends move the (least interested) FP1 on friday afternoon to saturday afternoon. It was a bit like early 2000s where they had that sunday warm up session before the race. It is a session but not very interesting one.

      1. @qeki I think FP1 is usually more interesting than this because it’s the first time seeing cars on track so with new updates on the cars & teams testing different things you have a bit of extra interest from that & with it been the first track time of the weekend you also get to see drivers getting upto speed.

        Then FP2 is more of that but with a qualifying simulation in the middle & then some race runs to give you some data to look at. Then Saturday morning FP3 is a bit more serious & a bit more about going for laptime with more low fuel qualifying simulations which make it the most exciting practice session of the weekend.

        @jerejj I agree. Cars are out there doing laps & that can be fun to watch but it just never really feels all that meaningful because of how restricted teams are in what they can change/test due to the cars been in parc-ferme.

        I go back to a point I made last year. One of the biggest things I hate about the sprint format isn’t simply the sprint race itself but how it affects the rest of the weekend & the purpose/feel of the other sessions.

        FP1 feels so manic that it’s difficult to take any of it in, Qualifying on Friday feels less important as not setting the grid for the GP takes away from of the tension/jeapody, FP2 feels less meaningful & the sprint itself takes some of the usual build of tension/excitement away from the GP & it’s giving us the build-up, Start & opening stint on Saturday which just makes me go into the GP feeling less excited than usual as i’ve seen the start/opening stint the day before so am going in with less unknowns.

        1. I agree – I think the biggest issue is the fixed parc ferme from the Friday qualifying. I mean fix it for the main race but why do so for the sprint

          Then the practice can mean something in that is serves the sprint rather than just running around

    2. So you’re implying that they should have another competitive session instead of practice on Saturday morning, @jerejj?
      Two sprint races on Saturday…. ;)

      1. The 2nd with reverse grid!

  2. Practice, quali, race.


    Practice, quali, sprint, race.

    Can argue how many practices a team needs I guess just shouldn’t they occur before quali.

    1. i think the normal 3 hours of practice is fine. gives fans at the track plenty of track running, gives drivers time to get in the groove & teams enough running to sort things out.

      i know some would like less to try and catch teams out but that is counterproductive in the sense that giving teams less is just going to mean those who are having issues are going to struggle more while those who have a good base are going to have more of an advantage.

      Ferrari & red bull for instance may not miss lost track time but mercedes, mclaren, aston martin & others trying to figure out how to improve would just be left floundering around by losing practice sessions and i don’t think that is a good thing if you want to see a closer, more competitive grid each weekend. its better for those teams to have time to get on top of issue so they can be more in the mix.

      1. It’s a funny thing frankly

        Used to race Superkart and Saturday unless an overseas meet (extra day or two of practice running) you got maybe two or three 10 lap runs. Mostly you were trying to set carbs to stop it blowing up with a bit of basic handling data. On short circuit four or five runs again on above but quicker sessions. More about engine tyres and handling in that order.

        Obviously it is all important but the best race I ran in years was at lydden hill. One day race – two short practice sessions (in the wet) I had not raced there before.

        I stopped in quals to not burn out my wets as it was drying.

        Started somewhere in the 30’s – just trying to not kill the wets, I had noticed up and around the top of the hill had silly amount of grip. I drove around the entire field on the first lap at that point. I could not believe thee entire field simply hugged the line. It was almost comical given I was a rookie at that circuit on that day.

        The field was full of multiple champions all lined up in a row.

        I drove around chaps with £300k transporters and endless resources.

        I arrived from Saudi knackered while my mate brought the kit down 200 miles in a rented van.

        I only managed that because they did not bother with actually running practice that day against a budget or mechanical restrictions. They had £160 sets of tyres and engines to waste. I absolutely did not. I was using my weakest engine not ecpacting much.

        Yet it counted for nothing.

        I did that Mainly because of the data my backside picked up in one session on a track I had not raced while trying to save money.

        Sometimes budget and practice create interesting events but f1 should just simply not be about a lottery depending on who screwed up the years before and had more to spend? Or who had the oldest designers? Not in my eyes.

        Do we really want this about chance?

        Depends on your ‘guy’ I guess.

        So far the incredible expensive research budget has, rather than close up the field and create overtaking, strung it out by multiple seconds?

        And has seen zero improvement in the racing element.

        That I find sad. Just like 2009. Except that was cheaper…

        1. That’s a nice story, but it is not applicable to F1 where even the “small” team employs 100s of people and spends $100m+ with bespoke cars and identical power units

  3. the f1 sites online i usually hang out are all extra quiet this weekend as it seems this awful sprint race nonsense has seen many fans tune out.

    less comments on here, less comments in the reddit threads, less engagement on the twitter hastags and it just feels like there is less interest and hype overall.

    even sky have gone with the c team for coverage this weekend.

    just feels very lackluster, like there just isn’t much interest, hype or that much excitement going into things this weekend with it been a sprint weekend.

  4. My biggest issue with interest for any Free Practice session is that it takes quite a bit of effort to get that really interesting data. Can somebody point me to resources where actual lap charts and the respective tyre compounds in use are listed in detail? I personally only really can take interest from that apart from the odd occasion of strikingly major updates/upgrades on cars.

    Even watching those sessions live (on TV – it’s a whole different matter when you’re actually at the track of course) isn’t really satisfying for me as the same timing is being displayed at any stage always relative to the fastest lap currently posted. Most of the laptimes lack the meaning if overlays or graphics don’t reveal the current stint length. I find it particularly hard to put things in perspective.
    And anyone eager to see drama, struggles or crashes in FP sessions can probably easily get that by watching F1’s highlight videos on their very own website.

    1. Hmm it’s all about monetising and you, depending on where you are, buying the right apps or package.

      Going to lose the long term ERS at this rate.

  5. Shows that there is some performance in that Mercedes, if they can find it. They are still relying more on conventional, draggy, sources of downforce, performance is not coming from the ground effect yet. Interesting.

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