Skip to content

Canadian GP: Fernando Alonso fastest in rain-affected second practice in Montreal as Max Verstappen suffers fire

Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso was the surprise pace-setter in second practice due to mixed conditions in Montreal; watch Qualifying for the Canadian GP on Saturday at 9pm, with Sunday's race at 7pm - live on Sky Sports F1

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Highlights from Friday Practice of the Canadian Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso was fastest in a rain-affected second practice at the Canadian Grand Prix as championship leader Max Verstappen suffered a fire.

The session was ran in drying conditions but the rain increased with 30 minutes to go, so Alonso got the best time on the board during the dry running as he went 0.463s quicker than Mercedes' George Russell.

Reigning world champion Verstappen only completed four laps due to an ERS (electrical recovery system) failure, which saw the car catch a smile fire as he came back into the garage. Both Red Bulls were fitted with a new engine ahead of Friday's running in Montreal.

Verstappen has a 31-point lead over Charles Leclerc in the drivers' championship but Red Bull are expected to be slightly on the backfoot again due to the high kerbs at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, an area where Ferrari are stronger.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Max Verstappen's FP2 session finished early after his car started smoking at the Canadian GP

But the rain throughout both practice sessions means nobody has had any seriously representative running.

Alonso's 1:15.810 was two seconds slower than the best dry lap time from 2023. Nevertheless, Aston Martin were very quick in the drying conditions as home driver Lance Stroll was third, ahead of Leclerc and Daniel Ricciardo in fifth.

"It was a tricky Friday for everyone, not many laps and no proper laps in wet or dry conditions," said Alonso.

Also See:

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Charles Leclerc and Lewis Hamilton narrowly avoid one of Montreal famous groundhogs during P2 of the Canadian GP

"But it could be like this in Qualifying or the race, so we need to analyse the data and be very sharp. The right decision can gain you five seconds, the wrong decision and you are out of the race.

"It's going to be an interesting weekend for you guys on the outside but for us it will be a gamble on which tyre to put on."

Impossible to predict pecking order

Ferrari were described as favourites for victory this weekend in Montreal by Lando Norris, but McLaren should also be in contention for the win on Sunday.

Norris, who topped first practice, was last in the classification and team-mate Oscar Piastri was 16th, but their positions don't represent their actual pace.

Lewis Hamilton finished second practice in seventh and was one of several drivers to complain about traffic going into the final chicane.

Stream every F1 race and more on Sky Sports with NOW
Stream every F1 race and more on Sky Sports with NOW

Stream Sky Sports live with no contract on a Month or Day membership on NOW.

Alonso called out Leclerc for blocking at the end of the back straight, stating it was "typical Ferrari". Leclerc is under investigation for a "tyre usage" incident.

The stewards have not confirmed what the incident is about but Leclerc went onto the track in the first minute of the session on intermediates, when the track was not declared wet.

Rules state the drivers cannot use intermediate or wet tyres if the circuit is not declared a "wet track", a message which appeared five minutes into the session.

Canadian GP Practice Two Timesheet

Driver Team Time
1) Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:15.810
2) George Russell Mercedes +0.463
3) Lance Stroll Aston Martin +0.654
4) Charles Leclerc Ferrari +0.746
5) Daniel Ricciardo RB +0.921
6) Kevin Magnussen Haas +0.963
7) Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +1.098
8) Yuki Tsunoda RB +1.141
9) Alex Albon Williams +1.167
10) Sergio Perez Red Bull +1.231
11) Esteban Ocon Alpine +1.607
12) Logan Sargeant Red Bull +1.686
13) Carlos Sainz Ferrari +1.912
14) Valtteri Bottas Sauber +2.007
15) Nico Hulkenberg Haas +2.093
16) Oscar Piastri McLaren +3.198
17) Zhou Guanyu Sauber +3.277
18) Max Verstappen Red Bull +3.501
19) Pierre Gasly Alpine +4.979
20) Lando Norris McLaren +5.033

Sky Sports F1's live Canadian GP schedule

Saturday June 8
5.15pm: Canadian GP Practice Three (session starts at 5.30pm)
8pm: Canadian GP Qualifying build-up
9pm: Canadian GP Qualifying
11pm: Ted's Qualifying Notebook

Sunday June 9
5.30pm: Grand Prix Sunday - Canadian GP build-up
9pm: Chequered Flag - Canadian GP reaction
10pm: Ted's Notebook

Formula 1 is on Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix and you can watch every session at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve this weekend live on Sky Sports F1, with Sunday's race at 7pm. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership - No contract, cancel anytime

Around Sky