Max sixth in FP2: "A bit too slow"

Published on 24 March 2017 by Stefan Meens

Max Verstappen finished FP2 of the Australian Grand Prix in sixth, despite lapping the Albert Park street circuit only eight times. After running wide in turn 12, the Dutchman damaged the underfloor of his RB13, prompting his team to repair the damage throughout the rest of the session.

“We’re trying to get a better balance and find more speed. We’re currently a bit too slow but we try to improve. I think we are where I expected us to be, which means we’re the third team. But we’ll make the most of it”, said Max post-practice. “On a street circuit like this, the track always improves during the weekend so things will be even faster in qualifying. Hopefully we’ll have a good start on Sunday. Once you’re in front, you can’t overtake.”

Like FP1, Lewis Hamilton led the way. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) was half a second a drift in second, followed by Valtteri Bottas in the other Mercedes. Unlike the first session, FP2 has quite a few interruptions.

Jolyon Palmer had the dubious honor of being the first crash of the 2017 season. The Renault driver lost the rear of the car in turn 16 as he accelerated onto the main straight. Palmer slammed in to the tire wall, giving his mechanics a busy remainder of the day.

Felipe Massa’s limited running was less spectacular; an electrical problem caused the Williams to stop track side. Meanwhile, an unknown problem for Kevin Magnussen limited the Haas driver to just six laps.

Marcus Ericsson caused a late yellow flag when he beached his Sauber in the Turn 6 gravel.

Australian Grand Prix - Albert Park - Friday 24 March 2017


Pos No  Driver              Team                        Time      Gap      Laps
01  44  Lewis Hamilton      Mercedes                    1:23.620           34
02  5   Sebastian Vettel    Ferrari                     1:24.167  +0.547s  35
03  77  Valtteri Bottas     Mercedes                    1:24.176  +0.556s  34
04  7   Kimi Räikkönen      Ferrari                     1:24.525  +0.905s  30
05  3   Daniel Ricciardo    Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer   1:24.650  +1.030s  27
06  33  Max Verstappen      Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer   1:25.013  +1.393s  8
07  55  Carlos Sainz        Toro Rosso                  1:25.084  +1.464s  34
08  8   Romain Grosjean     Haas Ferrari                1:25.436  +1.816s  29
09  27  Nico Hulkenberg     Renault                     1:25.478  +1.858s  36
10  26  Daniil Kvyat        Toro Rosso                  1:25.493  +1.873s  39
11  11  Sergio Perez        Force India Mercedes        1:25.591  +1.971s  35
12  14  Fernando Alonso     McLaren Honda               1:26.000  +2.380s  19
13  31  Esteban Ocon        Force India Mercedes        1:26.145  +2.525s  37
14  19  Felipe Massa        Williams Mercedes           1:26.331  +2.711s  6
15  9   Marcus Ericsson     Sauber Ferrari              1:26.498  +2.878s  29
16  18  Lance Stroll        Williams Mercedes           1:26.525  +2.905s  27
17  2   Stoffel Vandoorne   McLaren Honda               1:26.608  +2.988s  33
18  94  Pascal Wehrlein     Sauber Ferrari              1:26.919  +3.299s  30
19  20  Kevin Magnussen     Haas Ferrari                1:27.279  +3.659s  8
20  30  Jolyon Palmer       Renault                     1:27.549  +3.929s  4


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