F1 Spanish Grand Prix qualifying LIVE: Lewis Hamilton tops FP2 ahead of Bottas as Mercedes dominate – latest updates – The Sun

F1 is in Spain as Lewis Hamilton attempts to make it four wins from six so far this season.

The Brit driver finished top of second practice, ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas as Mercedes dominated.

Get all the latest F1 updates from Barcelona here…

  • LAP TIMES WILL TUMBLE

    The track has cleaned up and there is now more rubber down, so the lap times will drop.

    But not for Vettel, who is still half a second off his teammate, Leclerc.

  • SAINZ WITH A STUNNER

    He has split the Mercedes and goes P2. That was another good lap.

    Could we be in for a treat this weekend? Another shock winner?

  • ISSUE FOR RENAULT

    Renault tell Ocon he has an issue, but don't say what it is.

    “OK Esteban that was a problem with… Doesn't matter. Box this lap please. It's not the gearbox.”

    Remember, their rivals are also listening…

  • STONKING LAP FROM VERSTAPPEN

    The Red Bull man, who won last out, has just put together a fantastic lap.

    Blistering quick and totally faultless. He's closed that gap to the Mercedes.

  • HALFWAY INTO THIS SESSION

    It is Bottas, Hamilton and then Verstappen at the top of the timesheets.

    Those three again dominating times.

    Leclerc is fourth, Leclerc, Gasly continuing his good form in fifth.

    Meanwhile, Vettel in P16.

  • GOOD POINT FROM PIRELLI

  • EARLY LAP FOR LANDO

    The Brit bucks the trend and is the first of the teams to set a lap time.The track is still dirty but maybe McLaren are checking on their cooling issues that have impacted in Sainz.

  • NEW ENGINES

    A new power unit for Romain Grosjean, who was impressively quick in FP2.

    Also for Carlos Sainz and his McLaren, as it was overheating.

  • FINAL PRACTICE FOR THE SPANISH GP

    Plenty of tyre focus at the moment given the uncertainties as to how long the soft tyre will last.

    We saw last week how Red Bull upset the order by making the hard tyre work, whereas their rivals couldn't.

  • PEREZ RETURNS

    Sergio Perez will be back on the starting grid for the Spanish Grand Prix after finally testing negative for Covid-19.

    The Racing Point driver missed the last two races of the 2020 season – both at Silverstone – after contracting coronavirus last month.

    Perez tested positive for the virus after visiting his mother in his native Mexico and was temporarily replaced by German Nico Hulkenburg.

    After receiving a negative result, governing body the FIA confirmed the 30-year-old was free to return to the F1 paddock.

  • MORNING F1 FANS

    It was a Mercedes one-two in practice yesterday, with Lewis Hamilton 0.287s ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas in FP2, and Max Verstappen of Red Bull in third.

    After practice in the intense Spanish sunshine, drivers had their say on how the warmer-than-usual Barcelona conditions could affect proceedings in Sunday’s main event.

    Hamilton said: “It's definitely quite tough out there.

    “I don't think I've been to Spain when it's this hot. It's beautiful weather but it's killer in the car, and it's obviously very tough on tyres as well.”

    While Verstappen added: “It's so much warmer now that whatever you learn in winter testing is not quite relevant.

    “We are using all the hardest compounds. It's okay, it's manageable. I would have liked a bit softer but it is what it is.”

    Meanwhile, Hamilton could be set for a blow, with biggest Mercedes ally Toto Wolff considering quitting.

    The Austrian said: “I really have enjoyed many years in Formula One in that role and the discussions we are having are very good.

    “I am happy that my relationship with Ola is probably as good as it can be and we speak almost every day and there are many factors that make me want to stay in Formula One. On the other side, it takes a toll and that is in my considerations and, as it stands there is no reason not to continue with Mercedes, but we will find out.

    “What that means is it is a discussion I have to make for the future that I have to take with my wife and with Ola. That doesn't mean I won't be around as a team principal or around in another role, but that I am thinking about it.”

  • ICYMI – CRY WOLFF

    Lewis Hamilton could be about to lose his biggest ally at Mercedes after boss Toto Wolff admitted he was considering quitting.

    Wolff joined the team at the same time as Hamilton in 2013 and together they have dominated the sport. However, like Hamilton, the Austrian's contract ends in December and both have yet to sign new deals.

    Hamilton has made no secret of the fact he wants to see Wolff stay on, but Wolff says he is weighing up his options with Daimler CEO Ola Källenius and his wife, Susie.

    Wolff said: “I really have enjoyed many years in Formula One in that role and the discussions we are having are very good.

    “I am happy that my relationship with Ola is probably as good as it can be and we speak almost every day and there are many factors that make me want to stay in Formula One. On the other side, it takes a toll and that is in my considerations and, as it stands there is no reason not to continue with Mercedes, but we will find out.

    “What that means is it is a discussion I have to make for the future that I have to take with my wife and with Ola. That doesn't mean I won't be around as a team principal or around in another role, but that I am thinking about it.”

  • EXPERIENCED VETT

    Lewis Hamilton has backed Sebastian Vettel to re-find form, after a tricky start to the German's 2020 campaign.

    The Brit said, ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix: “I saw the difficult race he had had previously and all I can try to do is empathise with the position he’s in and try to be understanding

    “It can never be a great feeling to be told that you’re not wanted and to continue within the team, especially when you join a team and you’re in a team, you give your all, you give your heart.

    “But I think the way he’s pushing, the way he’s continuing to try and help the team just shows the great character he has and his commitment to racing, and I hope that something really positive comes up for him moving forwards.”

  • THE REIGN IN SPAIN

    Lewis Hamilton has spoken of how the warm conditions will affect Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona.

    The Brit said: “It's definitely quite tough out there.

    “I don't think I've been to Spain when it's this hot. It's beautiful weather but it's killer in the car, and it's obviously very tough on tyres as well.”

  • ROMAIN EMPIRE

    Haas driver Romain Grosjean is at a loss to explain his team's unexpectedly good showing in Friday's practice ahead of the Barcelona GP.

    He said: “Is it real? Pinch me!

    “I don't know, and in all fairness, no one really knows. It's the same car since the beginning of the year. We've made some good set-up work into Silverstone and so on, but it was power sensitive. Here it's maybe a little bit less.

    “Sixth in FP1, fifth in FP2. The long run pace was pretty good. We're really happy with that, I think there was some more work we can do on the car to bring it even more to my liking. Today, what a day.”

  • STAPP IT

    Max Verstappen has also had his say on the tyres being used in Barcelona this weekend.

    He said: “It's so much warmer now that whatever you learn in winter testing is not quite relevant.

    “We are using all the hardest compounds. It's okay, it's manageable. I would have liked a bit softer but it is what it is.

    “The compounds are so hard that I don't think you need to go that extreme [in qualifying] like we did in the second week in Silverstone.

    “But it was a positive day. Especially on the long runs the car felt pretty nice to drive, so that was important.”

  • HARD LUCK

    Lando Norris has hit out at the conservative range of Pirelli tyres being used at the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona this weekend.

    Following today's practice, he said: “Garbage. I felt like I had more grip on the wets, I don't know why. I think it was similar for everyone.

    “Any time anyone was on the hard tyre they looked awful and then they went on the medium or the soft and improved massively. I don't think it's just us.

    “The balance is just about okay on the soft and the medium, but as soon as you put the hards on it feels terrible, but that's the way it is.

    “I think we have to understand what we want to do for our plan tomorrow and the race, but it should be a little bit more exciting.”

  • GETTING MERCED

    Red Bull driver Max Verstappen has played down his chances of challenging Mercedes' qualifying times – but is hopeful of giving them a run for their money on Sunday in Barcelona.

    He said: “Well qualifying I don’t think so, Mercedes is really fast.

    “Who knows in the race. I felt quite good today but let’s see on Sunday if it’s going to be the same.”

  • CRY WOLFF

    Lewis Hamilton could be about to lose his biggest ally at Mercedes after boss Toto Wolff admitted he was considering quitting.

    Wolff joined the team at the same time as Hamilton in 2013 and together they have dominated the sport. However, like Hamilton, the Austrian's contract ends in December and both have yet to sign new deals.

    Hamilton has made no secret of the fact he wants to see Wolff stay on, but Wolff says he is weighing up his options with Daimler CEO Ola Källenius and his wife, Susie.

    Wolff said: “I really have enjoyed many years in Formula One in that role and the discussions we are having are very good.

    “I am happy that my relationship with Ola is probably as good as it can be and we speak almost every day and there are many factors that make me want to stay in Formula One. On the other side, it takes a toll and that is in my considerations and, as it stands there is no reason not to continue with Mercedes, but we will find out.

    “What that means is it is a discussion I have to make for the future that I have to take with my wife and with Ola. That doesn't mean I won't be around as a team principal or around in another role, but that I am thinking about it.”

  • PRACTICE TIMES

    Here are all the times you need to know from today's practice in Barcelona.

  • VALT FROM THE BLUE

    Valtteri Bottas suffered a bird strike in his Mercedes during practice for the Spanish GP.

    The Finn obliterated the bird leaving feathers flowing in the breeze on his way to topping the timesheets for FP1.

    He radioed his team saying: “That was close, just nearly hit a bird. I think I hit the wing.”

    His teammate, Lewis Hamilton beat him in the second practice but warned the searing heat could again hurt his tyres on Sunday.

    The Brit suffered a tyre failure at the British GP and was forced to make an extra stop last weekend at Silverstone.

    He added: “It was tough out there. I don't think I have been to Spain when it has been this hot. It is going to be tough on the tyres.”

  • FP2 IS DONE

    Hamilton is top, Bottas second.

    Other taking points. Red Bull look good in race pace.

    Daniel Ricciardo was in fourth, that's very decent for the Renault man.

    Still concerns for Ferrari, although Haas looked surprisingly quick.

    Two Alfa Romeos and the two Williams are the slowest.

  • LESS THAN 10 MINUTES TO GO

    And It is a Mercedes one-two with Hamilton beating Bottas.

    Then Verstappen 0.821 seconds more than Hamilton's time.

    Riccardo (0.985) Grosjean (1.250), Leclerc (1.264), Sainz (1.331)

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