Lewis Hamilton tops Chinese Grand Prix practice

by Jack Phillips on 13th April 2018

Lewis Hamilton twice heads Kimi Räikkönen in Shanghai practice

Lewis Hamilton set the pace in both practice sessions ahead of this weekend’s 2018 Chinese Grand Prix, twice heading Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen.

Valtteri Bottas ended each practice in third place.

Hamilton had been dominant in the morning practice, more than three-tenths clear of the field, but the gap reduced to just 0.007sec in FP2. Bottas in third was just 0.033sec back, with Vettel also just a tenth back in second practice. The German had earlier finished sixth in FP1.

Rain reduced the teams’ running in the second of the day’s sessions, falling shortly after McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne stopped on track with an unsecured wheel – the latest in a series of pitstop errors up and down the pitlane this season.  

Max Verstappen claimed fifth in FP2 ahead of Nico Hülkenberg, with Kevin Magnussen – again faster than his team-mate Romain Grosjean – splitting the Renaults with Carlos Sainz Jr eighth.

Daniel Ricciardo, fourth in FP1, ended the second practice in ninth following a mistake on his flying lap, ahead of Fernando Alonso in 10th. The Force Indias of Sergio Pérez and Esteban Ocon were split by Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly, who heads to China off the back of his best ever result and Honda’s best since its return.

Vandoorne ended the session 14th, with Brendon Hartley again adrift of his impressive team-mate in 15th. Sergey Sirotkin headed the two Saubers of Marcus Ericsson and Charles Leclerc, with Lance Stroll at the foot of the field following a scrappy afternoon.

The Canadian had been 0.3sec adrift in the morning session, too.


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Free Practice 2 classification

1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1min33.482sec  
2 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1min33.489sec +0.007sec
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1min33.515sec +0.033sec
4 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1min33.590sec +0.108sec
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 1min33.823sec +0.341sec
6 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1min34.313sec +0.831sec
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1min34.458sec +0.976sec
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 1min34.473sec +0.991sec
9 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing 1min34.557sec +1.075sec
10 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1min34.632sec +1.150sec
11 Sergio Perez Force India 1min34.792sec +1.310sec
12 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso 1min34.849sec +1.367sec
13 Esteban Ocon Force India 1min34.874sec +1.367sec
14 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 1min35.163sec +1.681sec
15 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso 1min35.333sec +1.851sec
16 Sergey Sirotkin Williams 1min35.340sec +1.858sec
17 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1min35.624ec +2.142sec
18 Charles Leclerc Sauber 1min35.916sec +2.434sec
19 Romain Grosjean Haas 1min36.471sec +2.989sec
20 Lance Stroll Williams 1min37.147sec +3.665sec

Free Practice 1 results

1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1min33.999sec  
2 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1min34.358sec +0.359sec
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1min34.457sec +0.458sec
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing 1min34.537sec +0.538sec
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 1min34.668sec +0.669sec
6 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1min34.861sec +0.862sec
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1min35.178sec +1.179sec
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 1min35.616sec +1.617sec
9 Romain Grosjean Haas 1min35.718sec +1.719sec
10 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1min35.800sec +1.801sec
11 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso 1min36.037sec +2.038sec
12 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1min36.044sec +2.045sec
13 Sergio Perez Force India 1min36.051sec +2.052sec
14 Esteban Ocon Force India 1min36.351sec +2.352sec
15 Sergey Sirotkin Williams 1min36.691sec +2.692sec
16 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso 1min36.715sec +2.716sec
17 Charles Leclerc Sauber 1min36.723sec +2.724sec
18 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 1min36.756sec +2.757sec
19 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1min36.909ec +2.910sec
20 Lance Stroll Williams 1min37.277sec +3.278sec

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