Sergio Perez led a Red Bull one-two in second Azerbaijan Grand Prix practice ahead of Max Verstappen, while Mercedes was mired in the midfield.
– Mercedes off the pace – Hamilton and Bottas down in 11th and 16th
– Leclerc crashes at Turn 15, going straight on into barriers
– Host of early incidents include spin for Vettel and escape road trip for Bottas
– Latifi’s Williams causes red flag by stopping on track
Erstwhile world championship leader Lewis Hamilton complained over Mercedes team radio “I don’t really know where all the time is” as he lapped a second off the Red Bulls’ pace in 11th.
Team-mate Valtterri Bottas fared worse still. After going down the Turn 1 escape road at the very start of the session, his best effort late was 2.069s slower than Perez and left him only 16th and he had another off-track excursion in the closing minutes too.
The Ferraris had set the early pace either side of a red flag caused by Nicholas Latifi’s Williams stopping on track.
Carlos Sainz Jr’s progress was slightly interrupted by a track positioning disagreement with Haas driver Nikita Mazepin, while Charles Leclerc had a more disruptive incident when he locked up and went into the barriers at Turn 15.
Leclerc is in the barriers 😱
— Formula 1 (@F1) June 4, 2021
Leclerc was able to reverse out and escaped with just a damaged front wing.
With Perez and Verstappen moving into first and second during the soft-tyre runs, 0.101s apart, the Ferraris were edged back to third and fourth. But Sainz was still within 0.128s of the top spot.
Despite being second quickest, Verstappen still expressed frustration with the Red Bull over team radio, requesting that the car be returned to its practice-one spec.
Pierre Gasly was one of many drivers to visit escape roads but still took fifth for AlphaTauri.
Fernando Alonso produced one of the strongest runs of his Formula 1 comeback so far to put Alpine sixth, ahead of a very promising seventh from Antonio Giovinazzi’s Alfa Romeo.
Lando Norris was top McLaren in eighth, with Esteban Ocon’s Alpine and Yuki Tsunoda’s AlphaTauri completing the top 10.
Practice 2 Results
|Pos||Name||Car||Best Time||Gap Leader|
|1||Sergio Pérez||Red Bull-Honda||1m42.115s|
|2||Max Verstappen||Red Bull-Honda||1m42.216s||+0.101s|
|3||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Ferrari||1m42.243s||+0.128s|
|7||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo-Ferrari||1m42.941s||+0.826s|
|12||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo-Ferrari||1m43.22s||+1.105s|
|14||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin-Mercedes||1m43.812s||+1.697s|
|15||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin-Mercedes||1m43.881s||+1.766s|