Russian GP: Verstappen outpaces Leclerc in second practice

Edd Straw

just 0.001s quicker.

Leclerc was the first of the frontrunners to set a time on softs to consolidate his position at the top of the timesheets, posting a 1m33.497s on his first flier and gaining six-and-a-half tenths on his previous best time.

With 44 minutes remaining, Verstappen then crossed the line to set a time of 1m33.163s, which put him 0.335s clear of Leclerc despite admitting he didn't have a perfect final sector.

Verstappen, who like all the Honda-powered drivers carries a five-place grid penalty thanks to the introduction of a new V6, set first and third sector times on his quickest lap that stood as the best of the session.

Mercedes driver set the fastest middle sector time of the session on his way to third-fastest overall.

The Mercedes drivers were among the last to set quick laps, with Bottas outpacing Hamilton by 0.152s.

Hamilton set his time just before Bottas and briefly held third place before being shuffled back by his teammate.

Ferrari driver only gained 0.104s on his quick lap compared to his medium-tyre run, leaving him 1.039s off the pace in fifth.

Toro Rosso driver in the battle for best of the rest, which his pace in the final sector key to prevailing by 0.029s.

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spent the majority of the session in the pits after an early eight-lap run on mediums thanks to a kerb strike that split the floor and caused an oil leak.

He returned to the track in the final 20 minutes after a floor change, having a near-miss with Hamilton in the long Turn 3 left-hander when he squeezed the Mercedes onto the inside kerb.

Albon went on to improve with a minute remaining to take 10th, 2.054s off the pace and just seven thousandths quicker than .

– who ended the morning session with a deranged rear wing after spinning into the barrier – 14th.

Alfa Romeo driver 17th.

was 18th fastest after a lock-up and off at the Turn 13 right-hand on his first qualifying simulation lap, later finding a slight improvement on his medium-pace but still 2.842s off the pace.

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Cla Driver   Chassis Laps Time Gap
1 Netherlands Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing-Honda RB15 Red Bull 29 1'33.162  
2 Monaco Charles Leclerc Ferrari SF90 Ferrari 33 1'33.497 0.335
3 Finland Valtteri Bottas Mercedes F1 W10 EQ Power+ Mercedes 22 1'33.808 0.646
4 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Mercedes F1 W10 EQ Power+ Mercedes 32 1'33.960 0.798
5 Germany Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF90 Ferrari 32 1'34.201 1.039
6 France Pierre Gasly Scuderia Toro Rosso-Honda STR14 Toro Rosso 26 1'34.971 1.809
7 Mexico Sergio Perez Racing Point-Mercedes RP19 Racing Point 31 1'34.998 1.836
8 Germany Nico Hulkenberg Renault R.S.19 Renault 33 1'35.026 1.864
9 Canada Lance Stroll Racing Point-Mercedes RP19 Racing Point 31 1'35.176 2.014
10 Thailand Alex Albon Red Bull Racing-Honda RB15 Red Bull 18 1'35.216 2.054
11 United Kingdom Lando Norris McLaren-Renault MCL34 McLaren 33 1'35.223 2.061
12 Russian Federation Daniil Kvyat Scuderia Toro Rosso-Honda STR14 Toro Rosso 38 1'35.337 2.175
13 Denmark Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari VF-19 Haas 26 1'35.351 2.189
14 Australia Daniel Ricciardo Renault R.S.19 Renault 28 1'35.370 2.208
15 Finland Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing-Ferrari C38 Alfa Romeo 34 1'35.374 2.212
16 France Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari VF-19 Haas 31 1'35.593 2.431
17 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. McLaren-Renault MCL34 McLaren 29 1'35.635 2.473
18 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing-Ferrari C38 Alfa Romeo 29 1'36.004 2.842
19 United Kingdom George Russell Williams-Mercedes FW42 Williams 38 1'36.785 3.623
20 Poland Robert Kubica Williams-Mercedes FW42 Williams 36 1'37.838 4.676
View full results