Tsunoda on top again in Spielberg F2 Free Practice

Yuki Tsunoda
Yuki Tsunoda

Yuki Tsunoda topped Free Practice around the Red Bull Ring for the second round in a row, ahead of a much-improved Nikita Mazepin for Hitech Grand Prix, and his Carlin teammate Jehan Daruvala.

The sun was beaming down for the first session of Round 2, with track temperatures hitting 52 degrees in Spielberg. You would have expected the tires to heat up pretty quickly, and yet there appeared to be a real lack of grip in the opening stages with both Marcus Armstrong and Mick Schumacher spinning on their flying laps.

The ART Grand Prix racer was able to get back onto the track, but Schumacher wasn’t as lucky. The German ended up in the gravel, which brought out a red flag and ended his session before it had even really begun.

The return to track was a lot more successful as Nobuharu Matsushita set the first meaningful lap of the afternoon, before Round 1 Feature Race winner Callum Ilott took P1, with a time of 1:16.462.

Carlin’s rookie pairing of Tsunoda and Daruvala had both looked quick in Free Practice last weekend, but were unable to translate that into Qualifying. This clearly hadn’t knocked their confidence, as the pair rose to first and second with Tsunoda dipping under the 1m 16s barrier for the first time on Friday afternoon.

Mazepin suffered a frustrating first round of the season, failing to score any points on his debut for Hitech Grand Prix. The Russian appears to be in a much stronger position for Round 2 though, as he broke up the two Carlin machines to nestle into P2.

Very little would change in the remaining 15 minutes, as teams appeared to focus on gathering data and undertaking longer runs.

The grid will switch from the medium to the supersoft Pirelli’s for Qualifying, which takes place today at 5pm local time.

Practice Times

Pos No. Driver Team Laps Time Behind Gap
1 7 Y. Tsunoda Carlin 24 1:15.692 0.000s 0.000s
2 24 N. Mazepin Hitech Grand Prix 22 1:15.838 0.146 0.146
3 8 J. Daruvala Carlin 25 1:16.017 0.325 0.179
4 25 L. Ghiotto Hitech Grand Prix 21 1:16.045 0.353 0.028
5 17 G. Alesi BWT HWA RACELAB 22 1:16.066 0.374 0.021
6 6 C. Lundgaard ART Grand Prix 24 1:16.100 0.408 0.034
7 21 R. Shwartzman PREMA Racing 22 1:16.160 0.468 0.060
8 2 D. Ticktum DAMS 23 1:16.217 0.525 0.057
9 5 M. Armstrong ART Grand Prix 14 1:16.218 0.526 0.001
10 9 J. Aitken Campos Racing 21 1:16.262 0.570 0.044
11 3 G. Zhou UNI-Virtuosi 22 1:16.293 0.601 0.031
12 14 N. Matsushita MP Motorsport 25 1:16.319 0.627 0.026
13 4 C. Ilott UNI-Virtuosi 23 1:16.322 0.630 0.003
14 16 A. Markelov BWT HWA RACELAB 24 1:16.470 0.778 0.148
15 12 P. Piquet Charouz Racing System 25 1:16.576 0.884 0.106
16 1 S. Gelael DAMS 24 1:16.592 0.900 0.016
17 23 M. Sato Trident 23 1:16.737 1.045 0.145
18 22 R. Nissany Trident 22 1:16.741 1.049 0.004
19 11 L. Deletraz Charouz Racing System 25 1:16.899 1.207 0.158
20 15 F. Drugovich MP Motorsport 24 1:17.307 1.615 0.408
21 10 G. Samaia Campos Racing 25 1:17.511 1.819 0.204
22 20 M. Schumacher PREMA Racing 4 1:28.122 12.430 10.611

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