Max Verstappen was the fastest man in Belgium on Friday afternoon, as the Red Bull driver produced a stunning performance to top the timesheets of the second practice session at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, ahead of championship rival Charles Leclerc.
On a chilly afternoon at Spa-Francorchamps, the drivers went out for their early runs with Verstappen leading the way on the medium tyre with a time of 1m 46.850s, ahead FP1 timesheet topper Carlos Sainz and his Ferrari team mate Leclerc.
Before the rain could hamper their running, the drivers made their way out onto the track with brand new sets of softs for the customary Friday afternoon qualifying runs. And it was Sainz who set the initial pace, before his time was beaten by Verstappen, who went 1.1s faster than the Spaniard.
Leclerc then crossed the line and went up into second, the only driver to be within a second of Verstappen’s time. Sainz slipped further down the order to fifth, thanks to the impressive performances of Lando Norris and Lance Stroll, who went third and fourth, respectively.
FORMULA 1 ROLEX BELGIAN GRAND PRIX 2022
Practice 2 results
|1 Max VERSTAPPEN Red Bull Racing||1:45.507|
|2 Charles LECLERC Ferrari||+0.862s|
|3 Lando NORRIS McLaren||+1.082s|
|4 Lance STROLL Aston Martin||+1.128s|
|5 Carlos SAINZ Ferrari||+1.142s|
It was a quiet afternoon for Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton the sixth fastest driver in the session, two spots ahead of team mate George Russell – who was heard earlier complaining about tyre temperature issues – in eighth.
The Alpine of Fernando Alonso found himself in a Mercedes sandwich up in seventh, with the soon-to-be-departing McLaren driver Daniel Ricciardo in ninth, just over six-tenths behind his team mate.
Sergio Perez left it late to go for his flying lap and set a time good enough for 10th, ahead of the impressive Williams of Alex Albon, in 11th.
Alfa Romeo driver Zhou Guanyu set the 12th fastest time of the session, just ahead of the AlphaTauri pair of Yuki Tsunoda in 13th and the returning Pierre Gasly – who missed FP1 as rookie Liam Lawson took his car for a spin – in P14.