Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Yas Marina, 2022

Verstappen returns to head second practice from Russell and Leclerc

2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix second practice

Posted on

| Written by

Max Verstappen more than made up for missing out on first practice by going quickest by three tenths of a second in the second session at Yas Marina.

The world champion was faster than Mercedes’ George Russell and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc as he took to the track for the first time on Friday. Lewis Hamilton was fourth for Mercedes, ahead of Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz Jnr.

The sun was slowly disappearing over the horizon as the green light appeared at the end of the pit lane to signal the start of the second practice session. After missing the earlier session to lend their cars to other drivers eight regulars – Max Verstappen, Carlos Sainz Jnr, Lando Norris, Fernando Alonso, Lance Stroll, Zhou Guanyu, Mick Schumacher and Nicholas Latifi – all returned to their cars for the second hour of practice.

Chalres Leclerc set the initial pace, posting a 1’26.045 on medium tyres, with Esteban Ocon going second quickest, three tenths of a second behind the Ferrari and George Russell a further half second behind the Alpine. Verstappen wasted no time in getting up to speed, running faster than team mate Sergio Perez in fifth after the two Red Bulls completed their first runs on the medium tyres.

After the first 15 minutes, Verstappen became the first driver in the session to fit on a set of soft tyres. He completed a single flying lap, going comfortably quickest by almost six tenths under Leclerc’s previous best time. Not too long after, Leclerc ventured out onto the track with a fresh set of softs, but while he improved on his own personal best time, he was still a quarter of a second slower than Verstappen who had improved his own benchmark to a 1’25.335.

The Mercedes pair of Russell and Hamilton fitted the soft tyres next. Russell moved to second place with a lap a tenth-and-a-half slower than Verstappen, although he was compromised through the final sector by traffic. Team mate Hamilton moved into fourth position almost two tenths of a second behind Leclerc in third.

As the sun set and the track was illuminated by floodlights, teams focused more on high-fuel runs than single-lap pace. However, Verstappen did improve his own fastest time to a 1’25.146, which increased his advantage over Russell at the top of the times to over three tenths.

That was how the session ended, with Verstappen setting the Friday pace despite only running in the second session. Russell and Hamilton were separated by Leclerc in fourth, with Perez in fifth and Sainz sixth fastest in the second Ferrari. The two Alpines of Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso were seventh and eighth, ahead of Daniel Ricciardo ninth and Valtteri Bottas completing the top ten.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix second practice result

11Max VerstappenRed BullRB181’25.14625
263George RussellMercedesW131’25.4870.34127
316Charles LeclercFerrariF1-751’25.5990.45330
444Lewis HamiltonMercedesW131’25.7610.61522
511Sergio PerezRed BullRB181’25.8520.70626
655Carlos Sainz JnrFerrariF1-751’25.9320.78631
731Esteban OconAlpine-RenaultA5221’26.0380.89228
814Fernando AlonsoAlpine-RenaultA5221’26.0430.89729
93Daniel RicciardoMcLaren-MercedesMCL361’26.1240.97814
1077Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo-FerrariC421’26.3001.15429
114Lando NorrisMcLaren-MercedesMCL361’26.3771.23128
125Sebastian VettelAston Martin-MercedesAMR221’26.3951.24928
1324Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo-FerrariC421’26.4791.33330
1418Lance StrollAston Martin-MercedesAMR221’26.5471.40127
1522Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri-Red BullAT031’26.6801.53430
1623Alexander AlbonWilliams-MercedesFW441’26.7501.60429
1747Mick SchumacherHaas-FerrariVF-221’26.8391.69326
1820Kevin MagnussenHaas-FerrariVF-221’26.9151.76925
1910Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Red BullAT031’27.0361.89029
206Nicholas LatifiWilliams-MercedesFW441’27.2622.11630

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Browse all 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix articles

Author information

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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

5 comments on “Verstappen returns to head second practice from Russell and Leclerc”

  1. The silence in this thread is just perfect!

    1. He dure did shut them up!

    2. the thread discussing his behavior is on page 2 and still going strong, you should check it.

      Why should anyone bring it to this one?

  2. Are we are supposed to be discussing Verstappen’s behavior on a article talking about him leading Practice 2?


Comments are closed.