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Brazil GP: Bottas pips Hamilton by 0.003s in Practice 2

Written by  Nov 09, 2018

Mercedes moved to the top of the timesheets as Valtteri Bottas pipped led Lewis Hamilton by just 0.003s in second practice at the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Conditions remained unchanged from the morning with the temperatures also remaining at a rather subdued 20 degrees under increasingly heavy cloud cover in Sao Paulo.

Rain would hold off, however, allowing the teams to complete their full programs though early runs on the harder compounds would be disrupted by a crash for Nico Hulkenberg as the Renault driver ran wide exiting Juncao and slid into the barrier.

A red flag would be called to clear his Renault away but soon the session would resume with the drivers completing their qualifying simulations on the Supersoft tyres.

Kimi Raikkonen would be the first before Sebastian Vettel and Bottas moved ahead on their second timed laps.

Hamilton then went faster in the first and third sectors on his flying lap but a small mistake in the middle, locking his brake into Laranja, saw him just fall short of dislodging the Finn off top spot.

Like Practice 1, less than a tenth covered the top three with Vettel in third as Red Bull's lack of pace on the straights began to show with Daniel Ricciardo three-tenths back in fourth.

Max Verstappen missed the first half of the session due to a cracked oil system, he would get out and was set to be on the pace of the leaders before being hampered by Lance Stroll at the final corner and along the main straight.

The Dutchman would end up almost half a second down in fifth with Kimi Raikkonen completing the top six.

The top 10 would remain unchanged from the morning with Haas again leading the way in seventh through Romain Grosjean.

Charles Leclerc would move up one position, however, to eighth ahead of Kevin Magnussen as Esteban Ocon maintained 10th in the Force India.

Down the field, Pierre Gasly ran a strong 12th for Toro Rosso as Honda revert to a Spec 3 engine for this weekend, Fernando Alonso also featured higher than expected in 13th in the McLaren.

Carlos Sainz had a wheel-to-wheel battle with Grosjean late on as the bubbling Haas/Renault rivalry continued but the French manufacturer has work to do as the Spaniard was only 14th.

The remaining positions and full lap times from the session can be seen below:

 

 

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