Russell heads Mercedes 1-2 in FP2


Ahead of today's second session the air temperature is 15.5 degrees C, while the track temperature is 19 degrees C. It remains cold and wet.

The upgrades this weekend see Ferrari with a new floor, AlphaTauri a new rear wing, Aston Martin a new beam wing, Williams a revised engine cover and Alfa Romeo: a new nose and front wing.

Following his crash at the end of this morning's session, Schumacher will play no further part today as he requires a change of chassis after the old chassis was cracked in the impact.

This session has been scheduled to last 90 minutes as it was to be used for testing the 2023 tyre compounds, but though the testing has now been abandoned the session will still last for an hour and a half.

Good luck with that, one might say for as the lights go green the majority of drivers are out of their cars and showing no signs of getting to work any time soon.

Not so, Latifi however, as the Canadian heads out on full wets.

As the Williams driver begins his first flying lap, Sainz heads out to join him.

Latifi crosses the line at 56.471, as Ricciardo and Albon head out.

Sainz posts a 49.615.

"Can't go straight," reports Latifi as he goes off at Turn 16.

A 50.736 sees Ricciardo go second, ahead of Albon and Latifi.

"We could go Inter, but too much risk," admits Sainz.

Russell goes fifth with a 52.859 as Magnussen, Norris and Zhou head out.

"We're standing by," Tsunoda is told, "because the drivers on track say conditions are getting worse."

"Wet," responds Norris when asked about the condition of the track. He subsequently goes second with a 50.468.

Hamilton heads out, followed by Gasly and Tsunoda.

Once again, Russell is the first to make the switch to Inters. Meanwhile, teammate Hamilton goes quickest with a 49.489.

As Latifi heads out on Inters, Russell crosses the line at 46.891, 2.598s up on his wet-shod teammate, who subsequently pits for the green-banded rubber.

As Russell reports that his "tyres are in a good place", Hamilton goes quickest with a 44.298.

Gasly goes third (Inters), ahead of Sainz and Norris.

A 46.806 sees Latifi go third on the Inters as the Aston Martin pair head out.

Poor old Tsunoda. Having lost time in the pits after his crew 'mislaid' a tyre, he now goes off at Turn 9.

Moment later, Leclerc locks-up and runs wide in the Hairpin. "The front-left is a strange shape," reports the Ferrari driver, "not because of the lock-up."

Verstappen finally heads out leaving Alonso as the only no-show.

Perez goes third (45.568), however he is demoted when his teammate posts a 43.571.

Hamilton retakes the top spot with a 43.536 only to lose out ot Verstappen then Russell (42.968).

With 42 minutes remaining, Alonso finally heads out.

All season we have seen Mercedes struggle with warm-up issues in cooler conditions, particularly last week in Singapore. Yet here we are in such conditions today and nobody can get near them.

Alonso's first flying lap sees the Spaniard go seventh, however with the rain having stopped drivers are now finding their Inters overheating.

Russell is informed that though there is a "dry window" it will then "get worse".

Leclerc is back on track after suffering what Ferrari described as a "brake issue".

No sooner is Alonso told of rain and Perez reports that he's run out of front tyres than the Mexican goes off at the Hairpin.

Vettel fails to improve on 15th (45.261) as McLaren reveals that its day's work is done having completed its intended run plan.

As opposed to outright wet it is now greasy, as Gasly proves by running wide at Spoon - and that was not a pun. The Frenchman is currently 19th.

"It's horrible, horrible," reports Gasly, who is told to pit.

Meanwhile Magnussen improves to 5th with a 43.187.

"All tyres are ****, no grip," reports Verstappen.

With seconds remaining, the Mercedes pair head out in order to perform a practice start.

Russell is quickest, ahead of Hamilton, Verstappen, Perez, Magnussen, Sainz, Alonso, Bottas, Ocon and Zhou.

Leclerc is eleventh, ahead of Latifi, Albon, Tsunoda, Vettel, Norris, Ricciardo, Stroll and Gasly.

Check out our Friday gallery from Suzuka here.

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Published: 07/10/2022
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