Hamilton edges Rosberg in second practice

F1GP17USA_HZ0989

Lewis Hamilton and title rival Nico Rosberg set the pace for Mercedes in second practice for the United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas.

Rosberg took the early advantage on the soft tyres, but Hamilton responded with a lap of 1:39.085 to edge his team-mate and title rival to the top of the standings by a mere 0.003s.

However, the current championship leader saw his session come to a premature end 15 minutes from time after encountering a gearbox problem that forced him into the garage.

Fernando Alonso was third for Ferrari, but an entire second down on Hamilton’s session topping time, ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, who missed most of the opening session after an ERS problem.

Felipe Massa was fifth in the lead Williams, while of Kimi Raikkonen completed the top six, a tenth of a second shy of the Brazilian’s time.

Daniil Kvyat continued his impressive Friday form with seventh fastest time for Toro Rosso, ahead of the two McLarens of Kevin Magnussen and Jenson Button after the pair topped the early running on the medium tyres, while Nico Hulkenberg rounded out the top 10 for Force India.

After missing opening practice, Valtteri Bottas was 11th on Friday afternoon for Williams, ahead of Romain Grosjean, who survived a spin through the fast Turn 5/6 complex.

Jean-Eric Vergne was 13th fastest as he returned at the wheel of the Toro Rosso after handing over his car to Max Verstappen in FP1, while Sergio Perez was 14th in the second Force India.

Pastor Maldonado ended the session 15th after a spin at Turn 19, ahead of the two Saubers of Adrian Sutil and Esteban Gutierrez, in 16th and 17th respectively.

Sebastian Vettel, who will start Sunday’s race from the pitlane due to an impending power unit change, was some five seconds down in 18th and last as he opted against completing a qualifying run.

Image courtesy of Daimler

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