Russell leads Mercedes 1-2 in FP2 with rain in Japan – Formula 1 News

THE formula 1 shaped the weekend of japan GP in order to allow a test time for the 2023 tires of the Pirelli during the second free practice and, therefore, increased the activity from 60 to 90 minutes in duration. It turns out that, with the persistent rain in the region of the Suzuka circuit throughout this Friday (7), the category canceled the test and maintained a long training session. In the activity without many emotions, George Russell finished fastest in FP2 on the Japanese track.

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Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz led the second free practice for a brief moment, but in general it was a fight between the two pilots of the mercedes by the tip. Russell and Lewis Hamilton exchanged faster laps for most of the hour and a half, but it was the young Englishman who clocked 1min41s935. Hamilton was second, 0s235 behind.

Verstappen and Sergio Perez put the red bull in the sequence, both 0s8 behind Russell, but it has to be understood that the circumstances make the actual performance an absolute mystery. Kevin Magnussen, Carlos Sainz, Fernando Alonso, Valtteri Bottas, Esteban Ocon and Guanyu Zhou closed the top-10.

The great entertainment moment of the training arrived in the first few minutes. Nicholas Latifi was the first to enter the track and, after some time, he decided to return to the pits. The detail is that the Canadian stuck the car in the wrong place after mistaking the escape area for the pit lane entrance.

O BIG PRIZE accompanies LIVE and IN REAL TIME all activities of japan GP Formula 1. On Saturday, FP3 starts at 0:00 [de Brasília, GMT-3]while the classification starts at 3 am.

Nicholas Latifi missed the pit entry at Suzuka (Video: Playback/F1 TV)

Check out how TL2 went:

With no rain at Suzuka, but still with a very wet track and a lot of lines full of water, F1 decided to give up on promoting the tests of Pirelli’s tires for 2023. The Italian manufacturer even managed to get the category to increase FP2 to 90 minutes of duration, but with the weather situation, F1 canceled the test. But he kept the workout at 90 minutes.

There was another news: Haas had to change the chassis of Mick Schumacher’s car after the crash at the end of FP1 and thus the German’s participation in the second training session of the day was cancelled.

Nicholas Latifi was the first to take a chance on the wet track and soon brought more people with him. Carlos Sainz, Daniel Ricciardo and Alexander Albon scored shortly afterwards. The Ferrari Spaniard soon recorded a time to open the table, passing in 1min49s615.

George Russell was the fastest in the second free practice of the Japanese GP (Photo: Toshifumi Kitamura/AFP)

Even without going very fast, Latifi shone in the first 15 minutes of the session. The Canadian had briefly departed the track before, but it was clear what had happened: Nicholas had mistaken the escape area for the pit lane entrance and entered the wrong place. Phenomenal!

Sainz took the opportunity to warn Ferrari that the track was still too wet. More people showed up at the track, but always using extreme wet tires in those first 20 minutes. McLaren wanted to know their main driver’s opinion, so they asked Lando Norris how the track was. “Wet,” he replied.

With almost half an hour of activity, Mercedes appeared reigning on the timesheets. Lewis Hamilton took the lead with a time of 1min49s489, but George Russell bet on starting on intermediate tires and was 2s faster. Russell improved even more on the second attempt and clocked 1:45.738. Intermediate tires became the norm after the first third of activity.

Shortly after, Charles Leclerc ran off the track and caused a brief yellow flag. Yuki Tsunoda, the pilot of the house, by the way, also took a walk in the gravel. Fortunately for both of them, nothing more serious with the car.

The laps continued to drop as they used the intermediate tires. Max Verstappen finally appeared on the track and took over the lead. Hamilton took it, and Verstappen ran in 1:43.137. Then Russell turned even faster and clocked 1min42s968. After half the 90 minutes, he was in the lead.

Charles Leclerc was not among the fastest in FP2 (Photo: Ferrari)

It was only after that that Fernando Alonso appeared on the track. FP1 leader, the two-time world champion didn’t think he needed to know much more about the tracks under these conditions. Only the Spaniard hadn’t ridden in FP2, apart from Schumacher, of course.

The fight for the fastest lap continued between the two Mercedes: Hamilton was back in front for a moment, but Russell was running even faster. The rain was still alive, too, and it was obvious that no one could use dry tires for the rest of Friday.

Sergio Pérez was yet another to appear parading on the lawn, now with just under 30 minutes on the clock. The rain seemed to be getting heavier, something Alonso would confirm on the Alpine radio moments later.

So the track emptied. Pérez was alone on the track at one point; then there were the two Mercedes and the Ferraris; the Ferraris and Latifi or just Sebastian Vettel. Hardly, the time table would undergo changes again.

An interesting detail is that Ayrton Senna’s pole at the 1988 Japanese GP was 1min41s853, on a dry track. 34 years later, the cars were running at this pace even with rain, water on the track and intermediate tires: Russell was leading with 1min41s935.

From then on, all that remained was Verstappen to complain about the tyres, which heated up in the rear and had no grip. But the result was signed.

Formula 1 2022, Japanese GP, Suzuka, FP2:

1 G RUSSELL mercedes 1:41,935 22
two L HAMILTON mercedes 1:42,170 +0.235 21
3 M VERSTAPPEN Red Bull Honda 1:42,786 +0.851 23
4 S PEREZ Red Bull Honda 1:42,834 +0,899 25
5 K MAGNUSEN Haas Ferrari 1:43,187 +1,252 16
6 C SAINZ Ferrari 1:43,204 +1,269 23
7 F ALONSO alpine 1:43,533 +1,598 13
8 V BOOTS Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1:43,733 +1,798 19
9 AND OCON alpine 1:43,884 +1,949 12
10 G ZHOU Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1:44,525 +2,590 16
11 C LECLERC Ferrari 1:44,709 +2,774 10
12 N LATIFI Williams Mercedes 1:44,962 +3,027 16
13 ALBON Williams Mercedes 1:45,039 +3,104 15
14 Y TSUNODA AlphaTauri Honda 1:45,257 +3,322 25
15 S VETTEL Aston Martin Mercedes 1:45,261 +3,326 23
16 L NORRIS McLaren Mercedes 1:45,885 +3,950 11
17 DRINCIARD McLaren Mercedes 1:46,030 +4,095 9
18 L STROL Aston Martin Mercedes 1:46,776 +4,841 20
19 P GASLY AlphaTauri Honda 1:47,491 +5,556 13
20 M SCHUMACHER Haas Ferrari
Time 107% 1:49,070 +7,135
Paddockast #168: Not even chaotic racing saves anymore: where did F1 2022 go wrong?

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