I promise you, there has been some on-track action today, with both free practice sessions having been completed at Northamptonshire’s Silverstone circuit. While the news of the day has been centred on the political wranglings, Sebastian Vettel has been driving well and managed to out-pace his team mate for the second session and post another fastest lap. The surprise of the afternoon was Adrian Sutil though, who went P3 in the Force India, which is impressive considering his more experienced team mate is languishing down in P19.
The wind picked up after lunch and was causing havoc with the balance of the cars. Many drivers had moments, particularly under braking to Stowe when the drivers attempt to control the car decelerating from the fast Hangar Straight into the moderately fast right-hander. There were also a few spits of rain during the lunch break, but this did little to upset the cars.
Like in the morning session, Red Bull Racing looked strong and were again comfortably the fastest, Vettel posting a lap 0.1s up on his team mate Mark Webber, who was a leisurely 0.7s clear of the Force India in P3.
Adrian Sutil drove well (until he collided with Fisichella’s car in the pitlane at the end of the afternoon) and posted his quick lap early on. The improvements made to the VJM-02 car are clearly working well, but it remains to be seen if the local team can carry this pace through Saturday and into Sunday. Of course, thoughts cannot help but turn to maiden points for Vijay Mallya’s team, particularly as the team’s factory is just over the road from the circuit.
Not performing as well as expected are Ferrari. Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen languish in P17 and P18 respectively. Also slipping a little were Toyota and Brawn. Rubens Barrichello managed to semi-respectable P6, but Silverstone favourite Jenson Button ended his day in P14.
Robert Kubica had a swiftly executed engine change after low oil pressure readings were noted and Nelson Piquet improved himself considerably after the break, going from P18 and 1m21.525s to P10 and 1m20.608s. Kazuki Nakajima also enjoyed the afternoon more, finishing in P4 and improving his time by 1.5s.
|Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing
|Mark Webber Red Bull Racing
|Adrian Sutil Force India
|Kazuki Nakajima Williams
|Fernando Alonso Renault
|Rubens Barrichello Brawn
|Lewis Hamilton McLaren
|Jarno Trulli Toyota
|Nico Rosberg Williams
|Nelson Piquet Jr. Renault
|Robert Kubica BMW
|Heikki Kovalainen McLaren
|Timo Glock Toyota
|Jenson Button Brawn
|Nick Heidfeld BMW
|Sebastien Bourdais Scuderia Toro Rosso
|Felipe Massa Ferrari
|Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari
|Giancarlo Fisichella Force India
|Sebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso