Max sixth after Monaco FP2: 'Third in qualifying would be good'
Published on 23 May 2019 by Stefan Meens
After P2 in the opening practice session of the Monaco Grand Prix, Max Verstappen was sixth fastest in Thursday’s FP2. After clocking his quickest lap (1:12.052) in the early stages of the session, the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing driver was forced to stay in the garage whilst his mechanics repaired a radiator leak. In the closing stages the Dutchman was able complete some more laps, but non of them resulted in a quicker time. Mercedes ended the day on top with Lewis Hamilton setting the fastest lap ahead of team mate Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
After free practice, Max explained his absence from most of FP2. “Some debris managed to get in our air intake which led to a radiator leak. It meant we had to replace the radiator, which obviously takes some time.”
Nevertheless, Max is confident ahead of the remainder of the weekend. “I was able to do quite a lot of laps today. You always try different things during free practice. Some work, some don’t, but it’s all fine. The balance was OK and generally speaking we have good pace. Mercedes is too quick so we have fill the gap between Mercedes and the rest. I don’t think we’ll be able to pressure the Mercedes so third in qualifying would be good.”
At the start of the session, Max is one of the last drivers to head out on track. When he does venture out, he does so on a set of the soft compound Pirelli tyre. His opening lap is 1:13.1 which is quickly followed by several quicker laps, including the youngster’s fastest effort of the session. In the process, Max brushes the wall at the swimming pool section, luckily without damaging his RB15. After a nine lap stint, the Red Bull Racer returns to the pits, where the team encounter the radiator leak.
In a session with few incidents, except a few minor excursions down the few run-off areas, the Mercedes dominate with Hamilton and Bottas spurring each other on. In the end, it is the reigning world champion who comes out on top.
In the closing stages, after his mechanics worked hard to replace a radiator, Max heads out for another run. Soon he returns to the team with the message “The car doesn’t have grip. I’m sliding and have got understeer.”
Max’ team mate, Pierre Gasly, ends the session in fourth in front of Red Bull colleague and Scuderia Toro Rosso driver Alexander Albon (P5).
|4||Pierre Gasly||GAS||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:11.938||+0.820s||39|
|5||Alexander Albon||ALB||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:12.031||+0.913s||51|
|6||Max Verstappen||VER||Red Bull Racing Honda||1:12.052||+0.934s||17|
|7||Kevin Magnussen||MAG||Haas Ferrari||1:12.174||+1.056s||54|
|8||Antonio Giovinazzi||GIO||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:12.239||+1.121s||51|
|9||Kimi Räikkönen||RAI||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1:12.342||+1.224s||51|
|11||Romain Grosjean||GRO||Haas Ferrari||1:12.392||+1.274s||51|
|12||Lando Norris||NOR||McLaren Renault||1:12.393||+1.275s||27|
|13||Carlos Sainz||SAI||McLaren Renault||1:12.419||+1.301s||47|
|14||Daniil Kvyat||KVY||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:12.577||+1.459s||39|
|15||Sergio Perez||PER||Racing Point BWT Mercedes||1:12.752||+1.634s||44|
|18||Lance Stroll||STR||Racing Point BWT Mercedes||1:14.558||+3.440s||40|
|19||George Russell||RUS||Williams Mercedes||1:15.052||+3.934s||37|
|20||Robert Kubica||KUB||Williams Mercedes||1:15.146||+4.028s||45|