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Hamilton Tops Rain Affected Free Practice 2 For Belgian GP

Lewis Hamilton topped the time sheets at the end of a shortened Free Practice 2 after rain affected the final 20 minutes of the session.

Hamilton set his time of 1:44.753 on the ultra soft tyres to go 0.262s faster than second fastest man, Kimi Raikkonen. The Finn cut the timing beam in 1:45.015 after Sebastian Vettel, who held the top spot for a short while, and Valtteri Bottas set their lap times.

Third fastest of the session was Bottas almost half a second off the pace with a session best time of 1:45.180. Max Verstappen kept Red Bull in the mix with a 4th fastest time ahead of Sebastian Vettel who was 5th fastest. Vettel ultimately didn’t have a good session saying that he was not entirely happy with his afternoon. His long run pace should give Mercedes something to think about.

Daniell Ricciardo was 6th fastest ahead of the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg. Both Renault’s were able to get into to the top 10 with Palmer in the other Renault ending the session 10th fastest behind Carlos Sainz in the Toro Rosso in 9th.

Felipe Massa had to sit out the session following his crash in Free Practice 1. Williams confirmed that the safety cell on his car was punctured and a new chassis would need to be fitted. This requires the car to be scruitineered again by the stewards before the car is able to turn a wheel on the track. It is expected that the car will be checked tomorrow morning ahead of Free Practice 3.

Drivers and teams took no chances as soon as the rain started falling and with 25 minutes still left in the session it was effectively over once the rain came down.

It does seem like this weekend will belong to Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes come qualifying. The new power upgrade to the Mercedes power unit looks like it’s already paying off, although we’ll only know the extent of the upgrade in Q3.

Photo credit: Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team

About Ritesh K Bhana

Ritesh likes to think he is a true Tifosi, but he still remains fair to other teams. He supports two other teams which are not Red Bull and McLaren. Follow Ritesh on twitter @Humanshield_1

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