Hamilton bounces back with impressive FP2 pace
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton put the dramas of morning free practice behind him, setting a blistering pace in the second practice session at Albert Park.
The Brit, who was unable to complete a lap in FP1 following a mechanical failure, stormed to the top of the time sheets in the afternoon 90 minute session.
A soft tyre-shod Hamilton set a personal best of 1.29.625s which was 0.157s quicker than team mate Nico Rosberg.
Fernando Alonso was third fastest ahead of Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel and McLaren’s Jenson Button.
Daniel Ricciardo enjoyed another solid session behind the wheel with the sixth fastest time.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen,Valtteri Bottas, Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg rounded out the top 10.
Hamilton’s time was approximately four seconds off the pace set in practice last year.
Only 19 cars set a time in practice with both the Caterhams of Marcus Ericsson and Kamui Kobayashi yet to record a flying lap.
The Lotus of Pastor Maldonado also failed to make an appearance.
Rosberg lit up the timing screens early on before Ricciardo eclipsed the time with a stunning effort as drivers began to switch to soft compound tyres.
As the field one-by-one changed to softer rubber the times improved as the session progressed.
With 40 minutes of the session remaining Hamilton struck with his personal best which stood as the quickest time at the end of the session.
While Alonso produce a string of consistent fast laps which earned him third overall, his team mate Raikkonen spent the majority of the hit out in the garage. The Finn’s car malfunctioned while trying to complete a practice start.
There was drama right at the end of the session when the Lotus of Romain Grosjean and the Force India of Nico Hulkenberg spun off at turn 6 and turn 10 respectively.
Grosjean suffered heavy damage to the rear of his Lotus while Hulkenberg’s Force India seemed to escape the incident unscathed.
Formula 1 – Practice 2
|4||Red Bull/Renault||Sebastian Vettel||41||1:30.381|
|6||Red Bull/Renault||Daniel Ricciardo||38||1:30.538|
|10||Force India/Mercedes||Nico Hulkenberg||33||1:31.054|
|11||Toro Rosso/Renault||Jean-Eric Vergne||35||1:31.060|
|13||Force India/Mercedes||Sergio Perez||36||1:31.283|
|16||Toro Rosso/Renault||Daniil Kyvat||36||1:32.495|
*See below for the comprehensive Speedcafe.com guide to the Australian Grand Prix