Saturday , September 19 2020

Brazilian General GP: Sebastian Vettel on top while Kubica crashes in Brazilian practice


Listen to the qualifications on 5 Live Sport Extra and the BBC Sport website at 18:15 on Saturday

Sebastian Vettel took Charles Leclerc to Ferrari's one-two in the second session equipped with incidents at the Brazilian Grand Prix.

The German was 0.021 seconds ahead of Leclerc with Red Bull's third-place finisher Max Versten, ahead of Mercedes riders Walter Botis and Lewis Hamilton.

Williams rider Robert Kubica kicked off the session with a severe crash at Trans Three from which he appeared unharmed.

Both the Honda and Toro Roses engines failed late in the session.

The session took place in cloudy but gray conditions after the wet weather for the morning session, but Kubica seemed to be caught by the humidity on a colored white line as he swam in the fast Turn Three on his first flight of the day.

The policeman, whose Williams used backup Nicolas Latifi in the first session, lost the rear, turning too much into the wall, badly damaging three corners of the car.

It was another blow for Williams, who has been battling pace all year and suffering from a lack of spare parts in recent races.

On the front, it is difficult to read the true competitive line, as both Ferrari and Hamilton drivers had messy things.

Vettel and Hamilton were blocked by Botas in their fastest laps, the world champion at the exit of Mergulo, the penultimate corner, and Vettel shortly afterwards at the exit of Juncao, only a few meters further.

Leclerc also did not improve in the final sector of his fastest lap, indicating that he also had more time in it.

Versailles impressed to be just 0.134 seconds off the pace as Red Bull continued to revive in the last few races, and Botas was 0.156 seconds behind Vettel. The compromised Hamilton – whose time, like Vettel's, was set on his second lap of his tires – was 0.067 seconds behind his team-mate.

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Ferrari may well see the results of the session as justifying what they consider to be baseless allegations about their engine, ahead of two explanations of the rules by the CIA governing body.

Ferrari does not insist that any decision – one to manage the operation of the hybrid system and the fuel flow meter and the other to add fuel to the combustion chamber – have no effect on their engine performance.

They have said they will return to their normal form in Brazil after a disappointing run in the United States for the last time, and at least on Friday appear to be favorites for Saturday's pole position.

The best of the rest was Kevin Magnusen's Haas, for not once battling the tire temperature in the disappointing season for the US team, followed by Renault's Daniel Ricciardo and Alfa Romeo's Kimi Raikkonen.

Red Bull's second rider, Alexander Albon, confirmed to the team for 2020 earlier this week, fought after the crash at the end of the first session and down to ninth, with 0.9 seconds from team-mate Versailles.

At Toro Rosso, Pierre Gasley's engine failed to find the middle ground, forcing the Frenchman to park on the "Trin Three", while Danil Quiat passed to Junquea, the last corner, five minutes behind, locking the rear wheels and sending rotate it easily into the compartment, bringing the red flag and session to a premature end.

Hamilton has inspired Ayrton Seine helmet for Grand Prix this weekend
Leclerc was 0.021 behind teammate Vettel

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