Max Verstappen pushed himself in Free Practice two to top the time sheets for Red Bull Racing for the Belgian Grand Prix.
The Dutch finished the opening session at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in seventh but improved massively in the second session to finish on top, beating Mercedes AMG PETRONAS and Scuderia Ferrari, to finish the session with a time of 1:48.085.
With only twenty minutes remaining of the session, Verstappen reported that he wasn’t receiving the power he should have. Red Bull were unable to find a fix but said the Dutch would be OK to continue racing. For only the second time in the last seventeen practice sessions a Mercedes driver was not out in front.
Behind Verstappen was Daniel Ricciardo, producing a one-two finish for Red Bull. Only 0.256 seconds separated the two drivers, while Nico Hulkenberg finished in third for Sahara Force India with a time of 1:48.657 to finish the session 0.366s ahead of the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel.
Sergio Perez completed the top five for the session with a time of 1:49.100 for Force India, completing a good day for the Silverstone-based team, while closely behind him was the Mercedes of Nico Rosberg. After a successful Free Practice 1, he was unable to continue this momentum into the second session, finishing with a time of 1:49.161 on the Soft compound, the only driver within the top ten on this compound as others used the Supersoft compound.
Kimi Raikkonen finished the session in seventh, setting a fastest lap time of 1:49.244, while improving from this morning was the Haas F1 of Romain Grosjean after he finished in eighth, although some of the problems from FP1 continued into the second session, with the Frenchman was complaining of no grip early in the session.
Jenson Button was also able to improve massively for McLaren-Honda as he finished the session in ninth with a time of 1:49.419, while behind him was the second Haas of Esteban Gutierrez who completed the top ten.
Just missing out on the top ten was the Manor Racing of Pascal Wehrlein, with the German finishing the session with a time of 1:49.716, improving from his morning session time by 3.121s. Fernando Alonso managed to participate in the second session after his morning session was compromised by a water leak. McLaren had fitted a new system during the break, leading to the Spaniard receiving a thirty-five place grid penalty.
Lewis Hamilton had an disappointing session after he was only able to set a time of 1:49.782 to position himself thirteenth. The Briton began the session with a fresh power unit, picking up a thirty place grid penalty. Daniil Kvyat finished the second session in fourteenth for Scuderia Toro Rosso with a time of 1:49.916 to finish ahead of the Sauber of Marcus Ericsson.
In a disappointing run, Valtteri Bottas finished the session in sixteenth after an ECU Failure which lead to Williams Martini Racing changing the component, while only six thousandths separated Bottas from team-mate Felipe Massa.
Behind Massa was the Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz Jr with a time of 1:50.194 to finish the session ahead of the Renault Sport of Kevin Magnussen. Magnussen was unable to improve enough to jump up the grid, leading to him finishing the session in nineteenth ahead of team-mate Jolyon Palmer.
The problems from FP1 continued into the afternoon session after the Briton reported of throttle issues from his RS16. His session appeared to be over when he stopped and reported of no power, but with help from his mechanics though, he was able to restart the car via the MGU-K.
Esteban Ocon was unable to continue his success from his morning session into the afternoon as he finished in twenty-first. Nine tenths of a second behind Manor team-mate Wehrlein, while completing the grid was Felipe Nasr who finished with a time of 1:50.719 in the second Sauber.
Belgian Grand Prix Free Practice 2
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