Nico Rosberg kept Mercedes at the top of the timesheets in second practice at Sepang although their rivals closed in to set up a fascinating weekend. Just three tenths of a second covered the top seven this afternoon with four different teams represented as Rosberg edged out Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel.
The afternoon kicked off in dramatic fashion for Max Chilton who spun his Marussia as he rounded turn three, a corner that may have been comfortably flat out in last year’s cars. The Briton returned to the track later on to set a time on the medium tyres, the same compound Felipe Massa used to set a 1:40.112. The Brazilian was the first leading driver to use the option tyres and was soon usurped by Rosberg, the Mercedes driver breaking into the 1:39s.
Kimi Raikkonen matched his morning result by taking second for Ferrari, suggesting his Melbourne nightmare is a thing of the past, while Sebastian Vettel also ducked below the 1:40 barrier to go third, doing so impressively on his second timed lap with the option tyres. Lewis Hamilton lost time in the middle sector of his lap, leaving him back in fourth, but the Briton would also appear to have time in hand.
After being quickest of all on the hard tyres, Fernando Alonso slipped to fifth on the mediums with Massa and Daniel Ricciardo completing the closely matched top seven. Jenson Button was seven tenths down in eighth with McLaren appearing to struggle in the hotter conditions with Valtteri Bottas and Nico Hulkenberg rounding out the top ten.
Another practice session went by and with it came more misery for Lotus with Pastor Maldonado failing to get out at all. Teammate Romain Grosjean did at least get fourteen laps under his belt but the last of those was halted by a gearbox problem.
|2014 PETRONAS MALAYSIA GRAND PRIX – FREE PRACTICE 2 RESULT|
|1||6. NICO ROSBERG||MERCEDES||MED||1:39.909|
|2||7. KIMI RAIKKONEN||FERRARI||MED||1:39.944|
|3||1. SEBASTIAN VETTEL||RED BULL RACING RENAULT||MED||1:39.970|
|4||44. LEWIS HAMILTON||MERCEDES||MED||1:40.051|
|5||14. FERNANDO ALONSO||FERRARI||MED||1:40.103|
|6||19. FELIPE MASSA||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||MED||1:40.112|
|7||3. DANIEL RICCIARDO||RED BULL RACING RENAULT||MED||1:40.276|
|8||22. JENSON BUTTON||McLAREN MERCEDES||MED||1:40.628|
|9||77. VALTTERI BOTTAS||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||MED||1:40.638|
|10||27. NICO HULKENBERG||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||MED||1:40.691|
|11||25. JEAN-ERIC VERGNE||STR RENAULT||MED||1:40.777|
|12||20. KEVIN MAGNUSSEN||McLAREN MERCEDES||MED||1:41.014|
|13||99. ADRIAN SUTIL||SAUBER FERRARI||MED||1:41.257|
|14||26. DANIIL KVYAT||STR RENAULT||MED||1:41.325|
|15||21. ESTEBAN GUTIERREZ||SAUBER FERRARI||MED||1:41.407|
|16||11. SERGIO PEREZ||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||MED||1:41.671|
|17||8. ROMAIN GROSJEAN||LOTUS RENAULT||MED||1:42.531|
|18||4. MAX CHILTON||MARUSSIA FERRARI||MED||1:43.638|
|19||17. JULES BIANCHI||MARUSSIA FERRARI||MED||1:43.752|
|20||9. MARCUS ERICSSON||CATERHAM RENAULT||MED||1:45.703|
|21||10. KAMUI KOBAYASHI||CATERHAM RENAULT||NO TIME|
|22||13. PASTOR MALDONADO||LOTUS RENAULT||NO TIME|