Hamilton pips Raikkonen in China Practice

Dan Herrero

Friday 13th April, 2018 - 6:20pm

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Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton has pipped Kimi Raikkonen in Friday practice for the Chinese Grand Prix as Daniel Ricciardo finished a second off the pace with an apparent braking issue.

Hamilton set what would ultimately be the day’s benchmark of 1:33.482s on the half-hour mark of Practice 2, with a ragged lap in his Mercedes despite running on ultrasoft tyres.

The Brit reported that there was “nothing left in these tyres” after the effort.

Team-mate Valtteri Bottas moved from fourth to second shortly after at 0.033s off the pace, before Raikkonen split them just before 45 minutes into the 90-minute session.

The field then settled into longer runs before light rain towards the end prevented any late flyers and locked in the classification as it stood at halfway.

Championship leader Sebastian Vettel therefore remained fourth in his Ferrari, from Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen.

The Renaults of Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz Jnr split seventh-placed Haas driver Kevin Magnussen.

Ricciardo finished the session 1.075s away from Hamilton in ninth position, complaining first that he was “not too happy with the pedal map” and later about a long brake pedal specifically in the #3 RB14.

His best lap in Practice 2 of 1:34.557s was on fact two hundredths of a second slower than in Practice 1.

Fernando Alonso, who was one of a handful of drivers to take to the circuit on intermediate tyres during the drizzle, rounded out the top 10 in his McLaren.

His team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne was involved in one of the main talking points when he pulled his MCL33 off the circuit with a loose right-rear wheel on an out lap.

The incident is under investigation for an alleged unsafe release.

New Zealander Brendon Hartley ended up 15th fastest, three positions and 0.484s back from Scuderia Toro Rosso team-mate Pierre Gasly.

All except 20 drivers set their fastest laps on ultrasoft tyres except for Haas’ Romain Grosjean, who was 19th-fastest on the soft compound with no supersoft available this weekend.

Hamilton also set the pace in Practice 1 with a 1:33.999s.

Practice 3 starts tomorrow at 1300 AEST before Qualifying from 1500.

Results: Practice 2

Pos Num Driver Car Fastest lap Split Laps
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:33.482 26
2 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1:33.489 +0:00.007 26
3 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:33.515 +0:00.033 27
4 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:33.590 +0:00.108 27
5 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer 1:33.823 +0:00.341 26
6 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:34.313 +0:00.831 30
7 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 1:34.458 +0:00.976 26
8 55 Carlos Sainz Renault 1:34.473 +0:00.991 28
9 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer 1:34.557 +0:01.075 26
10 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren Renault 1:34.632 +0:01.150 23
11 11 Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 1:34.792 +0:01.310 30
12 10 Pierre Gasly Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 1:34.849 +0:01.367 33
13 31 Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 1:34.874 +0:01.392 30
14 2 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Renault 1:35.163 +0:01.681 22
15 28 Brendon Hartley Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 1:35.333 +0:01.851 37
16 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams Mercedes 1:35.340 +0:01.858 31
17 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber Ferrari 1:35.624 +0:02.142 29
18 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber Ferrari 1:35.916 +0:02.434 26
19 8 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 1:36.471 +0:02.989 26
20 18 Lance Stroll Williams Mercedes 1:37.147 +0:03.665 19

Results: Practice 1

Pos Num Driver Car Fastest lap Split Laps
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:33.999 22
2 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1:34.358 +0:00.359 14
3 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:34.457 +0:00.458 28
4 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer 1:34.537 +0:00.538 22
5 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer 1:34.668 +0:00.669 22
6 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:34.861 +0:00.862 18
7 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 1:35.178 +0:01.179 21
8 55 Carlos Sainz Renault 1:35.616 +0:01.617 23
9 8 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 1:35.718 +0:01.719 21
10 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:35.800 +0:01.801 18
11 10 Pierre Gasly Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 1:36.037 +0:02.038 21
12 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren Renault 1:36.044 +0:02.045 29
13 11 Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 1:36.051 +0:02.052 28
14 31 Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 1:36.351 +0:02.352 32
15 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams Mercedes 1:36.691 +0:02.692 31
16 28 Brendon Hartley Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 1:36.715 +0:02.716 23
17 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber Ferrari 1:36.723 +0:02.724 23
18 2 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Renault 1:36.756 +0:02.757 25
19 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber Ferrari 1:36.909 +0:02.910 21
20 18 Lance Stroll Williams Mercedes 1:37.277 +0:03.278 28

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