Mercedes prevails as usual in second training Abu Dhabi, Verstappen third

Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton have given their second free training for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Bottas was the fastest in the evening session with 1,36,276, followed by world champion Lewis Hamilton.

The difference was two tenths between the two Mercedes drivers. Max Verstappen, fastest in the first training, put down the third time (1,37,046) at an appropriate distance.

Hamilton made his return in Abu Dhabi. In Bahrain, the leader of Mercedes was missing last weekend because he had tested positive for the coronavirus.

First training fifth

The seven-time world champion didnt arrive until Thursday in Abu Dhabi, where he was looking for the right rhythm the day later in the first training. Hamilton had to do it in that training with the fifth time, at a distance from Verstappen.

Verstappen recorded 1.37,378 in the first session on the circuit of Yas Marina. He kept Bottas behind him. The Finn was 0.034 seconds slower than its competitor for the second place in the World Championships ranking.

Mercedes gave more gas in late training: Bottas was fast. Only Hamilton stayed near him, even though the Brit admitted two tenths.

Verstappen was at over seven tenths. The Red Bull driver would have been a little faster, but his best lap time was dropped because he crossed the white lines (indicating the limit) with his car in turn 21.

โ€œ Mercedes again seems very strong. However, I missed a lap time on the soft band because I got behind Sergio Pรฉrez. So its hard to say exactly what the hole with Mercedes is,โ€ Verstappen looked back on the second training.

The second training was interrupted in the final phase because the car of Kimi Rรคikkรถnen caught fire. The Finn put out the fire himself. When the circuit was released again, there were six minutes left to drive laps. There was little more happening in that.

Last Ferrari weekend Vettel

Sebastian Vettel started his last Ferrari weekend Friday with the fourteenth time. In the second training the fifteenth place was added, almost two seconds from Bottas.

The German, who will be driving for Aston Martin next year, started 118 times for Ferrari, won fourteen GPs, drew twelve times for pole position and served 55 podium places.

But the world title remained out of reach since its arrival in 2015. The 2020 season is a disaster year for Ferrari. Vettel and Charles Leclerc did not win a single race and play no significant role in the World Cup battle.

โ€œ Our goal was to be better than Mercedes. In that we failedโ€, Vettel watched his period with the Italians this week. โ€œThe pattern of expectation was too high, too.โ€

Schumacher in action

At Haass, Mick Schumacher got in the car on Friday morning. The young German will make his debut in Formula 1 at the racing stable next year.

The son of racing legend Michael Schumacher could not break many pots in the morning session. His first round went in 1.46,151, eventually after an hour and a half there was 1.41,235 behind his name. That was good for the eighteenth position. In the evenings, Kevin Magnussen took his seat back behind the wheel.

Pietro Fittipaldi, the replacement of Romain Grosjean at Haas, became nineteenth in the first training. The gap with Verstappen was almost seven seconds for him. In the second session it was again place nineteen, now almost three seconds from Bottas.