George Russell finished the second free practice session on Saturday in preparation for the sprint race for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix with the fastest time. The Mercedes driver was unbeatable by Sergio Perez in a time of 1:19.457. Charles Leclerc set the third fastest time in the session.
Max Verstappen seemed to take it easy. The world champion finished the last training session of the weekend with the seventh fastest time.
Max Verstappen satisfied after qualifying for Emilia Romagna sprint race
Lance Stroll was the first on track when the light went green for the second free practice session, but Guanzy Zhou was the first to set a time in 1:24.826. Land Norris and Lewis Hamilton soon passed the time of the Chinese. Hamilton took P1 for the time being with a time of 1:21.880.
Both Red Bull Racing drivers came into action, Max Verstappen set the second fastest time, behind Sergio Perez, who improved the fastest time for the time being to 1:20.198. After 10 minutes, Yuki Tsunoda closed in on P3 at the expense of teammate Pierre Gasly. At the time, it looked like Valtteri Bottas would not be taking part in the session due to the power source being replaced at the Finn.
While Sergio Perez improved his time to 1:19.815, Max Verstappen briefly went wide over the curb. The Dutchman was 0.700 seconds behind his teammate. Behind the world champion Alex Albon had settled on P3 in the Williams.
A bright spot at Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton improved and drove to P2. His teammate, George Russell, was also on a roll, passing his compatriot in a time of 1:19,956. That brought him short of Perez’s time. Russell used his time and then drove to the new fastest time of 1:19.457 as the first 30 minutes had passed.
With 20 minutes to go, it looked like most of the teams were collecting data. as not many times were improved. The drivers quietly completed their programs. The one who didn’t was Charles Leclerc. the Ferrari driver improved to a time of 1:19.740 and positioned himself between Russell in P1 and Perez in P3 as the final quarter ticked away. The latter improved his time, the Red Bull driver crawled a little closer to Russell’s time. Behind the trio, Hamilton was in P4 ahead of Fernando Alonso who temporarily closed the top 5 in the Alpine when the last 10 minutes had arrived.
The last 2 minutes ticked away in which the score remained almost as it was. George Russell finished the second practice session with the fastest time in 1:19.457 ahead of Sergio Perez. Charles Leclerc closed the top 3 for Lewis Hamilton. Max Verstappen got stuck on P7 behind Carlos Sainz.
Results second free practice Emilia Romagna Grand Prix 2022, Imola