Spanish Grand Prix – Practice

Everyone survived the Bahrain GP weekend and now the circus moves on to Europe. Following the stewards’ decision not to penalise NR for either of his moves which resulted in first LH and then FA being pushed off-track, FA said β€œI think you are going to have fun in future races! You can defend position as you want and you can overtake outside the track! Enjoy! πŸ˜‰ ))”

SV tops the Drivers’ Championship table (4 points ahead of LH), and Red Bull is 9 points ahead of McLaren in the Constructors’ battle.

Tyre compounds for this weekend are hard (silver band) and soft (yellow), so that’s a 2-compound spread because they’re not using the mediums.

McLaren have confirmed they have made some personnel changes in their pit crew following their problems in the previous Grand Prix.

My GridBids picks for this weekend: JB, LH, FM, FA, NR & NHu

Free Practice 1
Even after last week’s test sessions in Mugello there are lots of changes being tried out
McLaren have a new nose design – a little stepped but not as ugly as the other cars
PRo lost a piece of bodywork from his HRT
FA was fastest (1:24.430) followed by SV, KK, JB, Valtteri Bottas (test driver for Williams), MS, RG, LH, KR, NH

Free Practice 2
Still a few modifications being tested
Radio from JB: “unbelievable understeer”
FA tops the timings table for a while, until JV surpasses him
SV 1:23.563
McLaren say the difference between the two tyre compounds is about 1.5sec/lap – that’s huge
60mins left of FP2
LH reports his gears are “way too long” – losing momentum when he changes gear
Understeer seems to be a problem for many of the cars
JB 1:23.399
PRe runs quite wide in the final turn and tears up some of the fake grass
Very neat view from PRo’s helmet cam
NK still in the garage – apparently it’s a wiring issue
30mins left of FP2
MW runs off in Turn 4, tries to use the grass beside the wall but it narrows; he struggles to keep the Red Bull moving as he cuts across the gravel, depositing lots of debris on the track πŸ™
NK is finally on track … and a lap later he’s parked the HRT on the circuit, so I guess the wiring problem wasn’t fully fixed
SP loses the Sauber’s tail into Turn 4, emulates MW and drags a lot of stones onto the track as he extracts himself from the gravel trap
15mins left; JB still fastest (1:23.399)
HK fails to make Turn and cuts across the gravel
RG complains of vibration in his Lotus; pits for new tyres
LH runs wide and uses the escape road … and right behind him BS does the same thing
On-board with FA shows him sawing at the Ferrari’s wheel
BS has spun his Williams; waits for a bit of clear space and spins it the right way round
Chequered flag falls to end the session
JB was fastest (1:23.399) followed by SV, NR, LH, KR, RG, MW, MS, KK, NH

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