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LEWIS HAMILTON TOPS PRACTICE IN BELGIUM

Lewis Hamilton topped practice for the Belgian Grand Prix - Photo: LAT

Lewis Hamilton topped practice for the Belgian Grand Prix – Photo: LAT

Lewis Hamilton made the most of the first half of the second practice session (FP2) to clock the fastest time before rain soaked the Spa-Francorchamps Circuit in Belgium.

Hamilton locked in the time of 1:44.753 on the ultra-soft tyres, to hold the advantage over Kimi Raikkonen in FP2 after the Ferrari driver topped the FP1 earlier in the day.

Hamilton’s Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas set the third fastest time, with the top five drives less than half a second off the pace of Hamilton.

Daniel Ricciardo trialling Red Bull's low drag setup in the wet - Photo: LAT

Daniel Ricciardo trialling Red Bull’s low drag setup in the wet – Photo: LAT

Red Bull used practice to trial an experimental low drag set-up, which saw Max Verstappen fourth fastest, while Daniel Riccardo was sixth. However the team determined that the top end speed gains weren’t making up for what they were losing in the corners. Leaving Red Bull to revert to a more traditional setup.

“In the dry it was a difficult one, we tried to be a bit aggressive today with the set-up,” said Ricciardo after practice.

“We tried a good top speed set-up but we lost too much time in the corners, the second time in particular.

“We didn’t gain enough in the corner to what we gained on the straights. It was good to try but we couldn’t do much more with what we have.

“First and third sector were awesome, we were purple, but the middle sector I am probably in an F3 car. We tried. I would have liked it to have worked but it didn’t.”

Williams mechanics prepare a new chassis for Felipe Massa - Photo: LAT

Williams mechanics prepare a new chassis for Felipe Massa – Photo: LAT

The most notable moment from FP1 was the crash of Fillipe Massa. The Williams driver lost the rear end of his car at the right-handed Turn 7 (Les Combes) early in the session, with the car making heavy contact with the barriers.

Although Massa walked away from the crash without issue, the Williams team were left with a lengthy repair replacing the chassis which meant Massa didn’t take part in FP2.

Formula 1 – Belgian Grand Prix – FP2

Position Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 17 1:44.753
2 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 21 1:45.015 0.262
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 17 1:45.180 0.427
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull 16 1:45.225 0.472
5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 20 1:45.235 0.482
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 15 1:46.072 1.319
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 24 1:46.441 1.688
8 Esteban Ocon Force India 19 1:46.473 1.720
9 Carlos Sainz Jr. Toro Rosso 19 1:46.561 1.808
10 Jolyon Palmer Renault 23 1:46.670 1.917
11 Fernando Alonso McLaren 20 1:46.743 1.990
12 Sergio Perez Force India 18 1:46.984 2.231
13 Romain Grosjean Haas 15 1:47.285 2.532
14 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 17 1:47.303 2.550
15 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 12 1:47.450 2.697
16 Kevin Magnussen Haas 15 1:47.556 2.803
17 Lance Stroll Williams 13 1:47.861 3.108
18 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 12 1:49.214 4.461
19 Pascal Wehrlein Sauber 18 1:49.725 4.972

Formula 1 – Belgian Grand Prix – FP1

Position Driver Car Laps Time Gap
1 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 13 1:45.502
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 19 1:45.555 0.053
3 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 13 1:45.647 0.145
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull 18 1:46.302 0.800
5 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 22 1:46.352 0.850
6 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 20 1:46.424 0.922
7 Carlos Sainz Jr. Toro Rosso 22 1:47.446 1.944
8 Esteban Ocon Force India 27 1:47.670 2.168
9 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 20 1:47.851 2.349
10 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 18 1:47.865 2.363
11 Jolyon Palmer Renault 14 1:47.930 2.428
12 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 15 1:48.037 2.535
13 Fernando Alonso McLaren 18 1:48.252 2.750
14 Sergio Perez Force India 19 1:48.452 2.950
15 Lance Stroll Williams 24 1:48.541 3.039
16 Kevin Magnussen Haas 20 1:48.615 3.113
17 Romain Grosjean Haas 20 1:48.626 3.124
18 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 21 1:50.160 4.658
19 Pascal Wehrlein Sauber 13 1:51.263 5.761
20 Felipe Massa Williams 3
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