Perez out, Hulkenberg in, Verstappen and Stroll lead practice for British GP

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SILVERSTONE, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 31: Lance Stroll, Racing Point RP20, Nicholas Latifi, Williams FW43, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16, and others practice their start procedures during the British GP at Silverstone on Friday July 31, 2020 in Northamptonshire, United Kingdom.

The Friday practice session from Silverstone was a hurried affair for Racing Point as Sergio Perez tested positive for COVID-19 and has been benched for the next two races. The big questions was, who will fill his seat.

The decision, and the correct one mind you, was to toss Nico Hulkenberg on a plane from Monaco, get him to the circuit, test him for The Covid and make him a seat in a matter of hours. That also included 45 minutes in a simulator and a crash course on the team’s steering wheel layout and functions.

In the end, Nico was six tenths off the pace of his teammate, Lance Stroll but not bad considering he’s never sat in this year’s car before. His teammate, Stroll, led the second practice session.

Max Verstappen took his Red Bull to the top of the first practice session while Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari sat out due to an intercooler problem. It was also a session that saw Antonio Giovinazzi spin and flat spot his tires but the delimitation of those tires was a dramatic affair.

FRIDAY TIRE SUMMARY

  • Temperatures at Silverstone were the hottest seen for several years, peaking at 37 degrees ambient and 51 degrees on track, adding to the challenge of this high-speed and high-energy circuit.
  • Racing Point’s Lance Stroll set the fastest time of the FP2 session this afternoon on the P Zero Red soft tire, around half a second slower than the equivalent time from last year.
  • As a result of the recent lockdown, the Silverstone track hasn’t been used extensively, meaning that the surface that was re-asphalted last year hasn’t matured much. The wind and high temperatures today also often made it quite difficult for the drivers to find the right levels of grip and aerodynamic balance.
  • In these tough conditions, the P Zero White hard C1 tire – nominated for the first time this year – offered a good compromise between performance and durability.

MARIO ISOLA – HEAD OF F1 AND CAR RACING FOR PIRELLI

“Silverstone is always a tough challenge, but when the track is ‘green’ on a Friday and in these extremely hot conditions, the job of the tyres becomes even harder. Because weather conditions are likely to become considerably cooler for the rest of the weekend, that makes life a bit harder for the teams: the data they collect today might not be entirely relevant to the expected race conditions. It was interesting to see that 17 cars out of 20 were covered by just 1.5 seconds in FP2, which suggests that we’re in for a closely-fought weekend.”

British GP FP2 results

POSDRIVERCARGAP
1Lance StrollRacing Point/Mercedes1m27.274s
2Alexander AlbonRed Bull/Honda0.090s
3Valtteri BottasMercedes0.157s
4Charles LeclercFerrari0.296s
5Lewis HamiltonMercedes0.307s
6Carlos Sainz Jr.McLaren/Renault0.546s
7Nico HulkenbergRacing Point/Mercedes0.636s
8Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri/Honda0.723s
9Daniel RicciardoRenault0.838s
10Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo/Ferrari0.885s
11Lando NorrisMcLaren/Renault0.895s
12Esteban OconRenault0.945s
13Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo/Ferrari0.982s
14Max VerstappenRed Bull/Honda1.116s
15Daniil KvyatAlphaTauri/Honda1.152s
16Romain GrosjeanHaas/Ferrari1.290s
17George RussellWilliams/Mercedes1.497s
18Sebastian VettelFerrari1.586s
19Kevin MagnussenHaas/Ferrari1.624s
20Nicholas LatifiWilliams/Mercedes2.684s

 

British GP FP1 results

POSDRIVERCARGAP
1Max VerstappenRed Bull/Honda1m27.422s
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes0.474s
3Lance StrollRacing Point/Mercedes0.582s
4Alexander AlbonRed Bull/Honda0.707s
5Charles LeclercFerrari0.799s
6Valtteri BottasMercedes1.097s
7Esteban OconRenault1.137s
8Daniel RicciardoRenault1.153s
9Nico HulkenbergRacing Point/Mercedes1.170s
10Daniil KvyatAlphaTauri/Honda1.446s
11Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri/Honda1.487s
12Carlos Sainz Jr.McLaren/Renault1.566s
13Lando NorrisMcLaren/Renault1.568s
14Kevin MagnussenHaas/Ferrari2.110s
15Romain GrosjeanHaas/Ferrari2.154s
16Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo/Ferrari2.324s
17George RussellWilliams/Mercedes2.477s
18Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo/Ferrari2.503s
19Nicholas LatifiWilliams/Mercedes3.281s
20Sebastian VettelFerrari
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