Verstappen leads free practice 2 with rain at end of F1 Belgian GP

The first day of F1 Belgian GP activities has ended. On the afternoon of this Friday (26), in the second free practice marked by rain in the final minutes, Max Verstappen ended the practice as the fastest in the pack.

Once again the session had the threat of rain that ended up not materializing. Therefore, the 1h duration of training took place without major problems and with the competitors turning times even faster than in FP1.

The Red Bull Dutchman scored his best time before the rain began to tighten around the circuit to ensure he was the fastest of the day. With a time 0s862 slower, Charles Leclerc was in second, with Lando Norris, Lance Stroll and Carlos Sainz ending the list of the best five of the opening activities.

It is worth remembering that both Verstappen and Leclerc will face penalties for Sunday’s race. The two title contenders had engines swapped and therefore must start from the back of the pack in Belgium.

Find out about free practice 2 of the F1 Belgian GP:

Another authorized practice started at the Belgian GP. For the session, the temperature was 18ºC according to the thermometer, with asphalt reaching 22ºC and the chance of rain running at 40%.

One of the first to leave the pits when the lights went out, Carlos Sainz was quick to say on the radio that the track has some spots wetter than expected. The Spaniard was the fastest in FP1.

First minutes completed and Max Verstappen already appears in first place with a time of 1min47s699 on the medium tyres. However, he was soon overtaken by Sainz, who escaped with two tires in 0s309.

Just over ten minutes into Spa-Francorchamps and the order on the timesheet was Verstappen, Sainz, Charles Leclerc, Sergio Pérez and Lando Norris. It is worth noting that the Monegasque and the Dutchman face punishment for engine change.

Despite the great length of the track, there are traffic points. George Russell got stuck behind the Alfa Romeo duo when he came on a fast lap, managing to pass only Valtteri Bottas.

With 43 minutes to the end of the session, most of the competitors were in the pits. Most drivers were on medium tyres, except Daniel Ricciardo and Mick Schumacher on soft, Lewis Hamilton, Russell, Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas and Nicholas Latifi on hard.

Just over ten minutes into Spa-Francorchamps and the order on the timesheet was Verstappen, Sainz, Charles Leclerc, Sergio Pérez and Lando Norris. It is worth noting that the Monegasque and the Dutchman face punishment for engine change.

Despite the great length of the track, there are traffic points. George Russell got stuck behind the Alfa Romeo duo when he came on a fast lap, managing to pass only Valtteri Bottas.

With 43 minutes to the end of the session, most of the competitors were in the pits. Most drivers were on medium tyres, except Daniel Ricciardo and Mick Schumacher on soft, Lewis Hamilton, Russell, Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas and Nicholas Latifi on hard.

Three drivers who were chasing losses from a short FP1 were Bottas, Kevin Magnussen and Esteban Ocon. The trio ran around eight laps in the first session, all with problems on their respective teams.

Leclerc, who is already facing punishment for the race, is having a very complicated session. In the first practice, he asked for his seat to be changed and now he returns to the Ferrari pits complaining of strange noises in the cockpit.

In first place, Verstappen has shown a much higher pace than the other opponents. The Dutchman has a time of 1min45s507, more than 0s800 for Leclerc, second, and more than 1s for Norris, third.

Less than half of the session left in practice and Verstappen is first. Leclerc, Norris, Stroll, Carlos Sainz, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Russell, Ricciardo and Alexander Albon rounding out the top-10.

While the overwhelming majority of the field has already done fast laps on soft tyres, Pérez is the only exception. The Mexican, in fact, had only completed seven laps, which could indicate a problem.

In the final stretch of the session, with 15 minutes left on the clock, the rain returned to Spa-Francorchamps. Although Saturday is also forecast to be wet, the race is expected to take place in dry conditions.

The drivers opted to finish their laps on the soft tyres, the best option for the conditions. However, with the rain tightening, several competitors ended up escaping the track such as Sainz, Hamilton and Norris.

Schumacher and Alonso also joined the group that left the track. Even on the radio, Mick said that “it is very difficult to see where the puddles are”.

With five minutes to go, Vettel opted to go out on fully wet tires. Although the conditions are for the intermediate compounds, the German may be collecting data for Aston Martin.

Checkered flag and no one was able to take Verstappen off the lead, who ended the day in Belgium as the fastest. Leclerc, Norris, Stroll and Sainz completed the top five.

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