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Hungarian GP 2013

JULY 26, 2013

Practice 2 Report - The Continuation

Sebastian Vettel. Hungarian GP 2013
© The Cahier Archive

Red Bull duo Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber continued their performance from Free Practice 1 by clocking the fastest times in Free Practice 2. But, unlike FP1 where they were comfortably faster, the Red Bulls had some competition from Romain Grosjean in the Lotus, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa and Mercedes teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

The ambient air temperature at the start of the 90-minute session was 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius), and the track temperature was the same it has been in FP1 ‘ 104 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius).

The new Pirelli tires with the 2012 construction casing mated to 2013 compounds had performed well in FP1. McLaren's sporting director Sam Michael reported that there were no signs of the problems that led to the tire blowouts in the British Grand Prix.

Max Chilton was the first out on the track in his Marussia. And he set the first time: 1:29.373 but Valtteri Bottas obliterated that with a 1:25.622 in his Williams. The Finn then lowered that to a 1:25.191 only to have his teammate Pastor Maldonado clock a 1:24.979.

Then the big boys came out to play. Romain Grosjean turned a 1:23.645 in his Lotus. Nine minutes into the session, Sebastian Vettel slammed in a 1:22.484 in his Red Bull, which beat the 1:22.723 he set to be fastest in FP1. Teammate Mark Webber turned a 1:22.970 which was almost identical to his FP1 best time of 1:22.982.

13 minutes into the session, Ferrari teammates Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa had still not opted to go out. But in the 14th minute they both got things underway.

At this stage everybody was on Pirelli's medium compound slick.

In FP1 only the Red Bulls got into the 1:22s. But by the 22 minute mark in FP2, Alonso, Massa, Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus), and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) had all set laps below the 1:23 minute barrier.

26 minutes into the session, Vettel, Webber and Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso) tried out the soft compound Pirellis. Vettel clocked a 1:21.264 and Webber did a 1:21.308. And Vergne set a 1:23.369 which was eighth quickest at the time.

32 minutes into the session, Nico Rosberg scraped into the 1:21s with a 1:21.991 in his Mercedes on the soft tires. A number of drivers were now running the soft compound.

Alonso and Massa on the softs were quick and their respective times of 1:21.426 and 1:21.544 put them third and fourth and close to the Red Bulls.

So, just past the midpoint of FP2, the top six were: Vettel, Webber, Alonso, Massa, Hamilton and Grosjean. Rosberg, seventh, was the only other driver to be in the 1:21s.

As the session wore on, the drivers began doing long runs on the soft and medium tires to check out their wear rates.

56 minutes into the session, there was a bit of excitement as Raikkonen and Button almost collided in the final corner. Meanwhile, Grosjean had moved up to third with a time of 1:21.417. Raikkonen's fast lap had been ruined by Button and he was eighth with a 1:22.011.

At the one hour mark, the top six were: Vettel, Webber, Grosjean, Alonso, Massa and Hamilton.

With 25 minutes remaining in the session, the teams continued to do their long runs and data gathering.

With 17 minutes remaining in the session, Rosberg was the only driver not out on the track. And a minute later he joined the fray.

Several drivers had "offs" with Turns 4, 7 and 11 being the favorite places for such outings. But nobody hit anything and all regained the track.

With everybody doing long runs on worn tires, the lap times were not coming down.

The top 10 at the end of FP2 were: Vettel, Webber, Grosjean, Alonso, Massa, Hamilton, Rosberg, Raikkonen, Jenson Button (McLaren) and Adrian Sutil Force India.