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Styrian Grand Prix 2021

Verstappen quickest in shuffled pecking order in Styria second practice

The Red Bull driver set the pace in Spielberg in a shaken up pecking order for the second practice session of the Styrian Grand Prix.

Verstappen Austria
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To news overview © Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

Max Verstappen underlined Red Bull's pace at the Styrian Grand Prix after topping the second practice session in Spielberg.

Verstappen, who was also fastest in FP1, was 0.336 seconds clear of McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo who was a surprise second.

Esteban Ocon shocked the field too in third place in his Alpine as the threat of rain never came during the afternoon.

On paper, Mercedes should be worried with their one lap pace. Lewis Hamilton was 0.384 seconds slower than Verstappen's lap time on the same soft tyre compound.

However, Hamilton actually set the best lap time of the day on a 1:03.355, only for it to be deleted as he ran wide at Turn 10 which is being monitored for track limits. That lap would have been 0.057 quicker than Verstappen on the soft tyres.

Fernando Alonso reaffirmed Alpine's pace in fifth with old rival Sebastian Vettel in sixth in his Aston Martin.

Lance Stroll had a good day too, just two places behind Vettel, with Aston Martin appearing to be closer to the sharp end of the grid this weekend in Austria.

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Result Free practice 2 - Styrian

Pos. Driver Team Time
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Sergio Perez was consistently off the pace compared to Verstappen and could only manage ninth whilst Antonio Giovinazzi impressed with 10th place in the Alfa Romeo.

Valtteri Bottas had a scary moment when he spun in the pit lane. Luckily he avoided any team personnel as the McLaren crew helped the Finn to turn his car around. The leaderboard didn't provide any solace for Bottas as he ended the session down in 12th.

Ferrari had a difficult day and may struggle to score points for a second consecutive weekend. Carlos Sainz recovered from an early spin at Turn 4 to end the day in 11th with teammate Charles Leclerc in 13th.

Nikita Mazepin also had a spin at Turn 4, crawling out of the gravel trap in his Haas, to finish 18th ahead of Williams' Nicholas Latifi.

Pierre Gasly did not participate in the afternoon session because Honda noticed something on the data from his power unit. Gasly was very quick in the morning, setting the second fastest lap time in FP1 in the AlphaTauri.

The action in Spielberg resumes at 11:00 (UK time) on Saturday with FP3 before qualifying at 14:00 (UK time).

F1 2021 Styrian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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