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Mexico City Grand Prix: F1 Free Practice 2 Results

What happened in the second practice session of the weekend ahead of the Mexico City Grand Prix?

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Max Verstappen finished top of the timesheet in free practice two in Mexico. 

Max Verstappen, Red Bull
Verstappen topped an FP2 session that featured some spells of rain. Credit: Rudy Carezzevoli via Getty Images

Max Verstappen went quickest once again on Friday in FP2 with a 1:18.686 at the Mexico City Grand Prix

A quick recap of FP1

Free Practice One saw Max Verstappen top the session with a 1:19.718. Alex Albon, who continues to impress for Williams in 2023, would set the second fastest time on the timesheet, going less than a tenth of a second slower than the Dutchman. Sergio Perez would round out the top three in his home country.

First practice would feature a lot of teams struggling with technical issues to their cars throughout the hour. The drivers would also have to adjust to the high-altitude conditions at the Mexico City Grand Prix.

However, FP1 saw five Formula 2 drivers get the opportunity to gain some vital experience in a Formula 1 car. These drivers included the current championship leader in F2 Theo Pourchaire, Fredrik Vesti, Jack Doohan, Oliver Bearman and Isack Hadjar.

This would mean that Valtteri Bottas, George Russell, Pierre Gasly, Kevin Magnussen and Yuki Tsunoda would all have an hour less of practice this weekend in Mexico City.

It was confirmed at the end of the first session that Tsunoda would start at the back of the grid for Sunday’s race due to his car receiving a new power unit.

With the first practice session completed, the question heading into FP2 was, could anyone get closer to this season’s world champion out on track?

Second Practice underway at the Mexico City Grand Prix

All the drivers waited eagerly at the end of the pitlane ready to go out for the start of the session. Daniel Ricciardo was the first driver to set a lap time on the hard tyres. However, after the first runs, Norris would lead the way at the top of the timesheet with a 1:20.109 on the test tyre.

In the first five minutes of the session, the weather changed as rain began to fall, with Verstappen reporting this to his team over the radio. As a dark cloud started to develop over the track, the Dutchman would put in the quickest time with a 1:20.085 on the test tyre.

Albon, who had a great FP1 session would then move himself onto the top spot 10 minutes into practice two with a 1:20.075. Many of the drivers continued to stay out on track, with most of the grid setting lap times on the test tyres.

After 15 minutes, Verstappen would go back to the top of the times with a 1:19.511 on the medium compound. More and more drivers then began to make their way into the pits to change for the medium tyres as the rain had now stopped. Leclerc then moved himself up to second, going only a tenth of a second slower than this year’s world champion.

Ricciardo who decided to stay on the test tyre, put in the third best time out on track 20 minutes into the session. Carlos Sainz who hardly got any running time in FP1 due to an issue with his car was sat in fourth, with Bottas who wasn’t even involved in the first session, would make up the top five in the first third of FP2.

Piastri would then go quickest as he opted for the soft tyre with a 1:19.163. Albon then moved himself up to second on the same tyre as the Australian driver.

Midway point in the session

As we hit the halfway mark in the session, Verstappen would go quickest once again with a 1:18.686 on the soft compound. Norris moved up to P2 on the leaderboard, as he still remained over a tenth of a second behind the Red Bull driver. Hamilton put himself in the top three for a brief moment before Ricciardo would go ahead of him.

P3 continued to change with 25 minutes to go in the session, as Perez would put himself into the top three, only to be beaten by Bottas and then Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari for that spot. Fernando Alonso would then take an unlikely spin on track as he nearly veered of into the barriers.

As we entered into the final 15 minutes of the session, the drivers started to move back onto the medium and hard compounds, as the times started to get slower.

The closing stages of Practice Two

Approaching the closing stages of FP2, the rain began to fall once again. With five minutes remaining in the session, no drivers were improving on their lap times.

As the Checkered Flag came out, Verstappen would top the timesheet once again in Mexico, with Norris ending the day with second quickest time. Leclerc would round out the top three.

Final Results
  1. Max Verstappen
  2. Lando Norris
  3. Charles Leclerc
  4. Valtteri Bottas
  5. Sergio Perez
  6. Daniel Ricciardo
  7. Lewis Hamilton
  8. Esteban Ocon
  9. Oscar Piastri
  10. George Russell
  11. Carlos Sainz
  12. Yuki Tsunoda
  13. Zhou Guanyu
  14. Alex Albon
  15. Nico Hulkenberg
  16. Pierre Gasly
  17. Logan Sargeant
  18. Lance Stroll
  19. Kevin Magnussen
  20. Fernando Alonso

The action continues on Saturday with the final practice session of the weekend and Qualifying all still to come before the Grand Prix on Sunday.

Feature Image Credit: (Photo by Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images)

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