REPORT: Sergio Perez fastest in FP2 at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix

04-06-2021 14:16
F1 News
REPORT: Sergio Perez fastest in FP2 at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Sergio Perez has topped the timings of FP2 on the Baku City Circuit, following suit from his teammate Max Verstappen in FP1. The Mexican finished ahead of Verstappen in second and Carlos Sainz in third. It was a strong session for AlphaTauri and Alpine, who had both of their driver pairings within the top 10. Mercedes had a very poor session, with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas only able to find themselves in 11th and 16th.

Red Bull and Ferrari on top, Mercedes struggling

Red Bull have shown the same speed they showed in FP1, with Perez and Verstappen being on top of the timings charts. The Mexican topped his teammate with a lap time of 1:42.115, 0.101 seconds ahead of Verstappen. After a successful weekend in Monaco a fortnight ago, which saw Red Bull and Verstappen move into the lead in both championships, the Red Bull duo seem to finally be on the track to success together.

Ferrari were not confident coming into this weekend, saying that they expected to struggle compared to the Monaco Grand Prix, but that's not been the case for this session. Sainz finished behind the Red Bull pairing, only 0.027 seconds behind Verstappen, with Charles Leclerc finishing behind his teammate. However, Leclerc radioed into his team on the final lap of the race, complaining about his new medium tyres so it will be important to see how they fare tomorrow!

Mercedes' FP2 session was by far the worst in a long time as both drivers were unable to find any pace throughout the whole session. Hamilton was only able to find a fastest lap time of 1:43.156, whereas Bottas was a second slower, only besting a lap of 1:44.184.

Midfield teams all across the board

The spread across the midfield this session was a major one. Alpine and AlphaTauri had the strongest session of the teams. Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso found themselves in sixth and ninth, and Pierre Gasy and Yuki Tsunoda finished in fifth and tenth. McLaren's Lando Norris and Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi were the final two to find themselves in the top ten.

Norris finished in eighth place, repeating his performance from FP1, but his teammate Daniel Ricciardo never found himself in the top 10. This morning, Ricciardo finished FP1 in fifth, with a lap time of 1:43.732 and was only able to improve minorly and put in a lap time of 1:43.298 in FP2.

Giovinazzi's seventh-place finish was five better than his teammate Kimi Raikkonen as the Italian set a strong time of 1:42.941. Finally, Aston Martin struggled to find any pace throughout the whole session, with both Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel not reaching the top 10 at any point throughout the hour. They finished in 14th and 15th respectively.

Williams and Haas at the bottom

Nicholas Latifi and Williams were on the unlucky side of things today, as an engine failure early in the session caused the Canadian's car to come to a standstill on track, thus resulting in a red flag. George Russell had some strong lap times throughout the session and finished in 17th place. Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin were once again towards the bottom of the timing charts.

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