Japanese GP: Bottas tops FP2 session that could decide grid

Valtteri Bottas survived spinning on the run to Suzuka’s start/finish straight to top second practice for Formula 1’s Japanese Grand Prix.

Japanese GP: Bottas tops FP2 session that could decide grid

Bottas was preparing to start the first flying lap of his qualifying simulation runs when he looped his W10 through the kink that follows the final chicane.

He continued but could only lap just under half a second down on Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, who set the pace on those first qualifying simulation runs despite having his own effort interrupted by Bottas' spin.

Hamilton improved fractionally from a 1m27.896s lap to a 1m27.885s best on his second set of tyres, before Bottas jumped to the top of the timesheet with a 1m27.785s effort.

Read Also:

No one else managed to lap faster than 1m28s. Max Verstappen’s Red Bull-Honda was best of the rest, almost three tenths down on Bottas.

The result, coupled with the FIA's clarification that FP2 may determine the grid for Sunday's race, means that Mercedes could be in line to lock out the front row should the rescheduled qualifying not take place on Sunday morning.

Ferrari elected to leave it until the very end of the session for its drivers to do their second qualifying simulation runs.

Charles Leclerc improved from sixth- to fourth-quickest with a lap less than a tenth slower than Verstappen's best that also displaced Sebastian Vettel to fifth.

Vettel was just under six tenths slower than Bottas, while Alex Albon managed to split the Ferraris initially before slipping to sixth, just over six tenths off the pace.

Carlos Sainz continued to lead the way among the midfield runners, his McLaren almost three tenths faster than the Racing Point of Sergio Perez and six and a half tenths down on Albon's Red Bull-Honda.

Toro Rosso's Pierre Gasly left it late to move into the top 10, taking ninth place by 0.004s from Lando Norris, who still made it two McLarens in the top 10.

Renault endured a difficult second session while continuing to evaluate a front wing upgrade. Daniel Ricciardo was only 17th-quickest and Nico Hulkenberg 18th.

Robert Kubica narrowly edged George Russell in the battle of the two Williams drivers, lapping just over half a second off Hulkenberg and 0.155s faster than Russell.

Session results

Cla # Driver Chassis Laps Time Gap
1 77 Finland Valtteri Bottas
Mercedes 33 1'27.785
2 44 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton
Mercedes 34 1'27.885 0.10
3 33 Netherlands Max Verstappen
Red Bull 24 1'28.066 0.281
4 16 Monaco Charles Leclerc
Ferrari 28 1'28.141 0.356
5 5 Germany Sebastian Vettel
Ferrari 37 1'28.376 0.591
6 23 Thailand Alex Albon
Red Bull 34 1'28.402 0.617
7 55 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr.
McLaren 29 1'29.051 1.266
8 11 Mexico Sergio Perez
Racing Point 28 1'29.299 1.514
9 10 France Pierre Gasly
Toro Rosso 34 1'29.354 1.569
10 4 United Kingdom Lando Norris
McLaren 35 1'29.358 1.573
11 7 Finland Kimi Raikkonen
Alfa Romeo 29 1'29.477 1.692
12 26 Russian Federation Daniil Kvyat
Toro Rosso 35 1'29.512 1.727
13 8 France Romain Grosjean
Haas 28 1'29.553 1.768
14 18 Canada Lance Stroll
Racing Point 27 1'29.597 1.812
15 99 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi
Alfa Romeo 33 1'29.651 1.866
16 20 Denmark Kevin Magnussen
Haas 31 1'29.749 1.964
17 3 Australia Daniel Ricciardo
Renault 30 1'29.859 2.074
18 27 Germany Nico Hulkenberg
Renault 29 1'30.334 2.549
19 88 Poland Robert Kubica
Williams 35 1'30.916 3.131
20 63 United Kingdom George Russell
Williams 36 1'31.071 3.286
shares
comments
Steiner gets "moral injury" fine for Sochi comments
Previous article

Steiner gets "moral injury" fine for Sochi comments

Next article

Ferrari's Suzuka deficit a "surprise", Leclerc admits

Ferrari's Suzuka deficit a "surprise", Leclerc admits
Load comments
Why 2022 could be Leclerc's best chance to end his Monaco F1 curse Prime

Why 2022 could be Leclerc's best chance to end his Monaco F1 curse

Charles Leclerc's ill-fortune at his home Formula 1 race is well-established. But his single lap pace and over longer runs during Friday practice will leave the Ferrari driver upbeat that he can make up for his Barcelona disappointment by finally recording a finish and perhaps even banking 25 world championship points in Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix...

Formula 1
May 27, 2022
The inevitable consequence of the Liberty F1 popularity boom Prime

The inevitable consequence of the Liberty F1 popularity boom

Sell out crowds at Formula 1 races are the norm rather than the exception these days, as grand prix racing is enjoying a massive boom under Liberty Media. But the Spanish Grand Prix highlighted numerous issues some circuits may face as demand for F1 soars

Formula 1
May 26, 2022
The danger for Red Bull in its Barcelona F1 team orders choice Prime

The danger for Red Bull in its Barcelona F1 team orders choice

OPINION: Red Bull walked into a team orders saga on its way to taking a Spanish Grand Prix 1-2 last weekend, where it took the lead of the 2022 Formula 1 world championships for the first time. But its decisions have added an element of risk to later races.

Formula 1
May 25, 2022
Why Mercedes' Spanish GP gains aren't as grand as they seemed Prime

Why Mercedes' Spanish GP gains aren't as grand as they seemed

Mercedes' strong showing in last weekend's Spanish Grand Prix prompted team boss Toto Wolff to say it had halved its deficit to the leaders and its Formula 1 title chances were back on after a rocky start to the 2022 campaign. But a closer inspection of the team's performance suggests its gains aren't as grand as they first appeared

Formula 1
May 24, 2022
What's next for the Green Red Bull controversy? Prime

What's next for the Green Red Bull controversy?

From the 'pink Mercedes' to the 'Green Red Bull', the Silverstone-based team has received suspicious glares from up and down the Formula 1 paddock over its car design exploits. But after being cleared by the FIA over its Spanish Grand Prix updates amid a backdrop of cries of foul play, what's next in this saga?

Formula 1
May 24, 2022
Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Prime

Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

In an unusually hectic Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix, Charles Leclerc was denied a dominant performance by his Ferrari engine letting go which allowed Max Verstappen to pick up the pieces. But numerous flashpoints kept the race twisting and turning throughout, with one perfect score from an emerging contender

Formula 1
May 23, 2022
How Verstappen overcame his and Red Bull’s errors to win in Spain Prime

How Verstappen overcame his and Red Bull’s errors to win in Spain

Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari engine disaster offered an open goal for Max Verstappen and Red Bull to strike, but the reigning Formula 1 world champion still had to solve multiple errors and profit from a begrudged assist from team-mate Sergio Perez, which created an unexpectedly eventful Spanish Grand Prix

Formula 1
May 23, 2022
Why Red Bull can win a Spanish GP that looked perfect for Ferrari Prime

Why Red Bull can win a Spanish GP that looked perfect for Ferrari

Formula 1's return to Spain on Friday ended with Ferrari leading the way from Mercedes, while Red Bull could only manage third fastest overall courtesy of Max Verstappen. But its chances of victory are far from remote with a deeper dig into the times despite Ferrari's strong start...

Formula 1
May 20, 2022