Leclerc leads Ferrari sweep of second Dutch GP practice

Zak Mauger/Motorsport Images

Leclerc leads Ferrari sweep of second Dutch GP practice

Formula 1

Leclerc leads Ferrari sweep of second Dutch GP practice


Ferrari teammates Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz topped a twice-suspended second free practice session at the Dutch Grand Prix from which Lewis Hamilton withdrew early with engine problems.

Leclerc topped the time sheet with a lap of 1m10.902s, beating Sainz by 0.194s. Home favorite Max Verstappen was fifth, the Red Bull driver having lost his best time to one of the session’s two red flags.

Hamilton was the cause of the first, the championship leader having completed just three laps when his Mercedes’ power unit gave up the ghost. The Briton eased off the power through the first turn and cruised through to Turn 8, where he was instructed to park the car and switch off the motor.

Mercedes wasn’t able to identify a specific issue during the session but suspects an oil system-related problem.

Hamilton’s car took around 10 minutes to clear, but the session was suspended yet again just 15 minutes later for Nikita Mazepin, who had carried too much speed into Turn 11 and found himself spun backwards and beached in the gravel.

Attempts to restart the Haas were unsuccessful, which necessitated a five-minute cessation of track running — particularly frustratingly for Verstappen, as he was about to speed past the scene of the spin for his qualifying simulation lap.

A burst of remaining single-lap runs followed the resumption, but with track time precious after the majority of FP1 and around a quarter of FP2 was lost to suspensions, long-run simulation became the order of the remainder of the session.

Esteban Ocon had led the standings from early in the hour with an impressive lap on softs that kept him third, behind only the Ferrari drivers. His subsequent long run on medium tires was similarly strong for Alpine.

Valtteri Bottas had a compromised session, his program switched early to compensate for Hamilton’s lost running. His fastest logged time left him fourth and 0.23s off Leclerc’s benchmark before the Finn switched to race pace analysis.

Verstappen followed in fifth after a long and consistent stint on the soft tire that should position him well for the race.

Fernando Alonso was sixth in the second Alpine ahead of AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and McLaren’s Lando Norris.

Antonio Giovinazzi was ninth for Alfa Romeo, while Sebastian Vettel completed the top 10, his Aston Martin repaired after the German’s first practice session was curtailed with a power unit problem.

Hamilton’s best time before his stoppage left him 11th at the flag ahead of Sergio Perez and Yuki Tsunoda, the Japanese driver effectively a session down after losing most of his FP1 to a technical problem.

Lance Stroll was 14th ahead of Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen. Mick Schumacher followed in 17th, with Nicholas Latifi, the spun-out Mazepin and George Russell in tow.

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