Saturday, May 21

Hamilton responds by going quickest in Abu Dhabi GP’s second practice

After Max Verstappen posted the fastest time in the first free practice session of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton responded to his title rival by going quickest in Friday’s second session with a time of 1:23.691.

The session ended before most drivers had completed their last lap, because Kimi Raikkonen hit the wall on what is his last Grand Prix weekend. That denied Verstappen the chance to try to beat the Mercedes‘ driver’s time, with the Dutchman finishing fourth and 0.641 seconds slower than Hamilton.

Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso were second and sixth respectively, with Alpine keeping up their good form and pace of recent weeks, while Valtteri Bottas was third as he struggled to keep his Mercedes within track limits on multiple occasions.

This second session took place at the same time that qualifying will begin on Saturday, so the conclusions drawn from this one are more relevant than from FP1. However, it’s unlikely that Verstappen is truly more than half a second slower than Hamilton and he could have posted a better time had he been able to finish his final lap.


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