Piastri quickest in rain hit second session

Piastri quickest in rain hit second session

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Ahead of today’s second session, the air temperature is 14 degrees C, while the track temperature is 18 degrees. It is cold and it is raining.

As a reminder of the upgrades, Red Bull has a new Sidepod Inlet, Floor Body Performance, Floor Edge and Front Corner, while Ferrari has a new Rear Wing and Rear Suspension and McLaren a new Front Corner.

Aston Martin has a new Floor Body, Floor Fences, Floor Edge and Diffuser, while Alpine has a new Front Wing, Front Corner and Beam Wing, and Williams a new Front Wing Endplate, Rear Wing and Beam Wing.

RB has a new Floor Body and Floor Edge and Stake a new Floor Body, while Mercedes and Haas have nothing.

Following his crash in FP1, James Vowles admits that the damage to Sargeant’s car is “extensive”. “All suspension is damaged, floor is damaged, the gearbox is cracked,” reveals the Englishman.

Moments later the team announces that “due to the extent of damage to Logan’s car, he will not participate in FP2. The team will continue repairs in time for tomorrow’s Free Practice session.”

All of which will impact the construction of the much-needed third chassis.

Verstappen was quickest earlier, ahead of Perez, Sainz, Russell, Hamilton, Leclerc, Alonso, Piastri, Tsunoda and Norris.

The lights go green but there is no rush to action, though as the rain appears to have eased we shouldn’t have to wait too long.

Having handed his car over to reserve driver Ayuma Iwasa, Daniel Ricciardo will be keen to experience the track in its revised calendar slot.

Having previously declared the track “wet”, ten minutes into the session Race Control amends the status to “normal grip conditions”. However, further rain is forecast today and throughout the weekend.

Fifteen minutes into the session, Hamilton breaks the deadlock and heads out. The Briton completes a lap before being told “we are happy to box”, at which point Ricciardo heads out. Like the Mercedes driver, the Australian is on mediums.

“It’s starting to rain more,” he reports.

“Low grip conditions,” confirms Race Control.

With 34 minutes remaining, Piastri heads out to test the waters… so to speak.

“It’s not really that wet,” says the McLaren driver, but subsequently pits as Zhou, Tsunoda and Ricciardo head out.

Local hero Tsunoda posts the first time of the afternoon, crossing the line at 42.304 on Inters.

It’s damp but not excessively damp, which, as far as F1 is concerned, is the worst possible situation, being neither one thing nor the other.

Ricciardo posts a 46.461. He subsequently improves to 41.913 while Tsunoda consolidates his top spot with a 40.946.

Bottas heads out for a solitary lap, but with 11 minutes remaining the fans in the stands will be hoping for a late flurry of activity.

Bottas heads out again, along with his Stake teammate. When they subsequently pit, Albon and the Haas pair head out.

The Haas pair bravely opt for softs but admit that it is “too wet” and head back to the pits.

Albon, on the other hand, feels it’s time for slicks.

Piastri heads out on softs while the Stake duo stick with Inters.

On the red-banded rubber Piastri goes quickest (of three) with a 36.862, however with less than a minute remaining it isn’t going to be bettered.

That said, a whole heap of drivers head out on softs including Hamilton and the Ferraris.

Piastri improves to 34.725, while Hamilton goes second with a 35.226 and Leclerc third (38.760).

Verstappen, Gasly, Perez, Alonso, Stroll and Russell fail to make an appearance.

For what it’s worth, Piastri is quickest, ahead of Hamilton, Leclerc, Tsunoda, Ricciardo, Norris, Sainz, Ocon and Magnussen.

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