Canadian GP, Practice Two: Max Verstappen sets the pace
Verstappen quickest in both of Friday's sessions; Mercedes avoid running hypersoft tyres
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 10/12/18 4:39pm
Max Verstappen set the pace ahead of Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo in Friday practice for the Canadian GP.
After a controversial outburst during Thursday's press conference, the young Dutchman did his talking eloquently on the track on Friday as he set the pace in both sessions.
"Max has come into the weekend with a lot of criticism but he has established he has the speed. He's a future champion and today he's dominated," said Sky F1's Damon Hill.
Monaco victor Daniel Ricciardo missed much of the session after Red Bull detected an issue around his engine but the Australian returned to action for the final 20 minutes to set the third-quickest lap time and prolong hopes he will avoid an engine-related grid demotion this weekend.
World championship leader Lewis Hamilton was fourth fastest but only half a second down on Verstappen despite setting his fastest time on supersoft tyres - two 'steps' below the hypersofts which Verstappen and Raikkonen used.
"Mercedes are the team to beat," warned Ricciardo.
Mercedes have only brought five sets of the hypersofts to Montreal - Ferrari and Red Bull have both taken eight - and seem intent on trying to avoid using the fast-but-fragile compound on race day.
At Ferrari, only Sebastian Vettel will use the Scuderia's new engine this weekend. But the German had a quiet afternoon and was only fourth quickest, behind Hamilton on the hypersofts, after a lengthy set-up change in the Ferrari garage.
"We are not quite there," admitted Vettel.
Along with Honda, who were fastest in the speed traps during Practice One, Renault have introduced an upgraded power unit at Montreal as Red Bull prepare to make a decision on the identity of their power providers for 2019 and beyond.
Its introduction may have been critical as Verstappen out-paced Raikkonen to claim top spot in the charts by a tenth of a second.
Ricciardo finished three tenths further back.
"The car is working well, but we are still lacking top speed," said Verstappen. "But we are not far away and in general it was a positive day."
Williams endured another miserable outing as Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin finished last, while the omnipresent walls around the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve track caught out both Stoffel Vandoorne and Carlos Sainz during the session.
After Renault driver Sainz triggered a red-flag stoppage after spinning into the barriers, Vandoorne broke the front suspension of his McLaren car as he pushed to match the top-ten time of team-mate Fernando Alonso.
The Belgian currently trails Alonso 6-0 in qualifying this year.
This Saturday's qualifying hour starts at 7pm UK time, with build-up coverage on Sky F1 from 6pm.
Canadian GP Practice Two Timesheet
|1) Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1:12.198||Hypersofts|
|2) Kimi Raikkonen||Ferrari||+ 0.130||Hypersofts|
|3) Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull||+ 0.405||Hypersofts|
|4) Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||+ 0.579||Supersofts|
|5) Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||+ 0.787||Hypersofts|
|6) Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||+ 0.863||Ultrasofts|
|7) Romain Grosjean||Haas||+ 1.422||Hypersofts|
|8) Esteban Ocon||Force India||+ 1.549||Hypersofts|
|9) Sergio Perez||Force India||+ 1.556||Hypersofts|
|10) Fernando Alonso||McLaren||+ 1.668||Ultrasofts|
|11) Charles Leclerc||Sauber||+ 1.686||Hypersofts|
|12) Brendon Hartley||Toro Rosso||+ 1.691||Hypersofts|
|13) Kevin Magnussen||Haas||+ 1.758||Hypersofts|
|14) Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||+ 1.769||Hypersofts|
|15) Marcus Ericsson||Sauber||+ 1.910||Hypersofts|
|16) Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren||+ 1.969||Ultrasofts|
|17) Carlos Sainz||Renault||+ 2.235||Supersofts|
|18) Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso||+ 2.288||Hypersofts|
|19) Lance Stroll||Williams||+ 2.505||Hypersofts|
|20) Sergey Sirotkin||Williams||+ 2.584||Hypersofts|