Azerbaijan GP: Williams Martini drops down the order in FP2

By Andrew Hooper
April 28 2018

After an encouraging Friday morning practice session the Williams Martini team saw its drivers drop down the times after the second Friday practice for the 2018 Azerbaijan GP. Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin would finish in 14th and 17th in what was an unevntful session. Lance would be heard on his radio frustrated with the handling of his car. Despite having dropped down the times the Williams drivers were still part of a very close midfield group who were all close together.

 Williams Martini Azerbaijan GP Friday 2nd Practice

Team Summary:
After an encouraging opening Friday practice session the Williams team would get both drivers out very early. After some early runs it would be Magnussen quickest with a 1m:45.248. But Ricciardo would go quicker with a 1m:43.947 running on the supersoft tyre. Grosjean was now second followed by Ocon and Vettel. Hamilton was now third but on the soft tyre. Twenty minutes into the session and the Williams drivers were 15th and 18th. Hamilton would improve to be second followed by Ocon, Magnussen, Perez, Grosjean, Vettel and Vandoorne 8th.

Ricciardo would set a quicker fastest time with a 1m:43.512, while Bottas would move into second using the ultrasoft tyre. Hamilton was now third but had set a soft tyre time. Verstappen was able to set a time good enough for third with Vettel fourth. But Sainz would jump up to third using the ultrasoft tyre. On the ultrasoft tyre Hamilton would be fourth while for Red Bull Ricciardo was on a very quick lap and would set a 1m:43.017 to improve his quickest time. Hamilton was now third behind Bottas and ahead of Sainz and Verstappen. Ricciardo was able to improve with a 1m:42.816 with Raikkonen now second also on the ultrasoft tyre. A further improvement from Ricciardo with a 1m:42.795 with Raikkonen second followed by Verstappen, Bottas, Hamilton, Alonso, Ocon, Sainz, Magnussen, and Hulkenberg tenth.

After their ultrasoft tyre runs the Williams drivers were 14th and 17th having lost pace over their earlier session. The entire field had all set ultrasoft tyre times. With just over thirty minutes remaining the teams would start their longer runs on the ultrasoft tyre. The final stages of the session would various tyres been tested with Williams having Sergey complete a run on the soft tyre while Lance remained on the ultrasoft. Despite having dropped down the times the Williams drivers were part of a very close midfield group who were all close together in their times.

Lance Stroll:
Lance would also come out but was on the supersoft tyre. His first lap was slow as he prepared for his first flying lap. His next lap was a 1m:52.053 to be 13th. Lance continued to set quite slow times currently 17th. Lance would improve with a 1m:45.606 to be tenth dropping to 11th. Lance would pit briefly coming back out currently 15th. Lance would pit returning to his garage after a nine lap run. Lance had complained about traffic saying "Oh my god! I can't do a lap right now." In his pit Lance would drop to 18th. Lance would follow his team-mate out using the ultrasoft tyre. Lance was not able to improve now 19th. But like his team-mate after a few laps he would improve to be 14th with a 1m:44.654. Lance would come on the radio saying that his car was undriveable with issues on corner entry. Despite his difficulties Lance would continue to lap the circuit now with a time of 1m:44.459 but still 14th. After a nine lap run Lance would pit. He would return and the final part of the session would see him complete a longer run on the ultrasoft tyre.

Sergey Sirotkin:
Sergey would again be first out on the track running on the soft tyre. Sergey would set a 1m:47.647 to be seventh, dropping to ninth then twelfth. He would improve to be tenth with a 1m:46.331 dropping to eleventh then 13th. After a ten lap run Sergey would pit currently 17th. Sergey would drop to 20th as he sat in his pit. With thirty minutes of the session complete Sergey was back out this time on the ultrasoft tyre. Sergey would set a 1m:45.822 but this was only good enough for 19th. Surprisingly Sergey would improve with a 1m:45.007 to be 14th having done quite a few laps on the ultrasoft tyres. He would drop to 17th and would pit. After a lengthy stop Sergey would return using the used ultrasoft tyres for what no doubt will be a long run on these tyres. Sergey would complete a run on the ultrasoft tyre switching to soft tyres to complete the session.

Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m42.795s - 35
2 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m42.864s 0.069s 33
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull-Renault 1m42.911s 0.116s 27
4 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m43.570s 0.775s 25
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m43.603s 0.808s 31
6 Fernando Alonso McLaren-Renault 1m43.700s 0.905s 34
7 Esteban Ocon Force India-Mercedes 1m43.814s 1.019s 30
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 1m43.834s 1.039s 36
9 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1m43.977s 1.182s 29
10 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m44.091s 1.296s 33
11 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m44.127s 1.332s 38
12 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m44.142s 1.347s 31
13 Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari 1m44.425s 1.630s 27
14 Lance Stroll Williams-Mercedes 1m44.459s 1.664s 31
15 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso-Honda 1m44.712s 1.917s 39
16 Charles Leclerc Sauber-Ferrari 1m44.940s 2.145s 30
17 Sergey Sirotkin Williams-Mercedes 1m45.007s 2.212s 33
18 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso-Honda 1m45.051s 2.256s 36
19 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren-Renault 1m45.288s 2.493s 29
20 Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1m46.042s 3.247s 9

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