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Hamilton sparks another red-flag interrupted session as Ferrari take practice honours

Hamilton sparks another red-flag interrupted session as Ferrari take practice honours

F1 News

Hamilton sparks another red-flag interrupted session as Ferrari take practice honours

Hamilton sparks another red-flag interrupted session as Ferrari take practice honours

F1 was left frustrated on its return to Zandvoort after a 36-year wait as red flags were shown on three occasions across the two practice sessions.

The old-school circuit has undergone a significant revamp since F1 last featured on the calendar in 1985, ensuring teams and drivers needed to get in as much running as possible to understand the nuances of a track featuring two banked corners.

But after 37 minutes were lost in FP1 following a power unit failure on Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin, which sparked safety concerns before it was finally retrieved, a further two red flags were shown in FP2.

The first of those, after just five minutes, sparked roars of delight in the grandstands rammed with orange-clad Max Verstappen fans as Lewis Hamilton pulled over after reporting a loss of power.

It was Mercedes' second issue of the day given it also supplies power units to Aston Martin. It was later reported to be an abnormal oil system problem.

After another eight-minute delay, the cars had only been on track for a further 16 minutes when the red flags were out again.

On this occasion, Nikita Mazepin lost the rear of his Haas on entry into the fast right-left kink of turns 11 and 12, going on to beach his car in the gravel and leading to a further five-minute loss.

It meant across the two hours of practice in total, 50 minutes were lost to red flags, leaving the teams still searching for information going into the final practice hour on Saturday ahead of qualifying.

When the red flag was shown for Mazepin, Verstappen was on a fast lap, with his response one of frustration as he said; "It's insane. I just can't get a lap man."

Mercifully, the final 25 minutes were trouble-free, with Ferrari on top and Charles Leclerc spearheading a one-two, with Carlos Sainz 0.154secs adrift of his team-mate's leading time of one minute 10.902s.

Verstappen had to settle for fifth quickest on the timesheet, 0.362s adrift and with Alpine's Esteban Ocon and Valtteri Bottas in his Mercedes ahead of him.

Alpine's Fernando Alonso has so far fared well and was sixth fastest, narrowly behind Verstappen and ahead of AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly, who was followed by McLaren's Lando Norris, Antonio Giovinazzi in his Alfa Romeo and Vettel.

The four-time champion did what he could to make up for lost time and was late on track in FP2, managing 24 laps overall.

Despite his early exit, Hamilton still finished 11th quickest, a second down ahead of Red Bull's Sergio Perez, who has so far struggled to get to grips with the circuit.

George Russell, fresh from the high of his qualifying lap in a wet Belgian Grand Prix that netted him the runner-up spot on Sunday as no race took place, propped up the standings, 1.953s down.

Dutch Grand Prix second practice results

1. Charles Leclerc [Ferrari] 1:10.902

2. Carlos Sainz [Ferrari] +0.154s

3. Esteban Ocon [Alpine] +0.172s

4. Valtteri Bottas [Mercedes] +0.230

5. Max Verstappen [Red Bull] +0.362

6. Fernando Alonso [Alpine] +0.378

7. Pierre Gasly [AlphaTauri] +0.560

8. Lando Norris [McLaren] +0.586

9. Antonio Giovinazzi [Alfa Romeo] +0.776

10. Sebastian Vettel [Aston Martin] +0.811

11. Lewis Hamilton [Mercedes] +1.009

12. Sergio Perez [Red Bull] +1.044

13. Yuki Tsunoda [AlphaTauri] +1.194

14. Lance Stroll [Aston Martin] +1.234

15. Daniel Ricciardo [McLaren] +1.255

16. Kimi Raikkonen [Alfa Romeo] +1.304

17. Mick Schumacher [Haas] +1.705

18. Nicholas Latifi [Williams] +1.708

19. Nikita Mazepin [Haas] +1.933

20. George Russell [Williams] +1.953

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