Mercedes F1 junior driver George Russell made his mark on the in-season test by setting a new unofficial lap record at the Hungaroring, less than one tenth of a second ahead of Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen.
Having been hampered by gearbox issues on the first day of the test, Russell was back in action today and set a 1m15.575s to beat Antonio Giovinazzi’s best effort from day one.
Raikkonen led the morning session, but he and Russell traded table-topping efforts during the afternoon, with the Briton being the first to set his final flying lap on the hypersoft tyre.
The Ferrari was then equipped with the hypersoft tyres, but his final effort fell just 0.074 of a second shy of the Mercedes.
Russell’s lap time was 0.6 of a second faster than the official lap record set by Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in FP3, albeit on a compound that was one step softer.
Jake Dennis – who was a surprise inclusion in the Barcelona test earlier in the year – had another chance to familiarise himself with the Red Bull RB14, which was used by Daniel Ricciardo yesterday, and the Briton’s best soft-tyre effort was 1.437 seconds off the pace.
Antonio Giovinazzi, who impressed with his efforts in the Ferrari yesterday, was given a further chance to make his mark at Sauber on day two, meaning the Italian registered a hefty 212 laps across the two days.
His best effort was also on the soft tyre, and he finished fourth fastest and half-a-second adrift of the Red Bull.
Russian driver Nikita Mazepin was handed another testing outing with Force India, having already tested with the team at Barcelona earlier this year.
His day was a problematic one, and mechanical gremlins on his car were the cause of two red flags. However, he did manage to set times on the hypersoft tyre, one of which was good enough for fifth place.
Fan favourite Robert Kubica made another appearance for Williams. He completed over 100 laps, and his ultrasoft-tyre time of 1m18.451s in the morning session was faster than Williams’ best lap throughout the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend. Although it should be remembered that qualifying took place in the wet.
So far this season, Kubica has participated in pre-season testing (Barcelona), the two in-season tests (Barcelona & Hungary) and two free practice one sessions (Spanish & Austrian Grands Prix) and, according to his comments at the start of the year, he will have at least one more FP1 session in the second half of the year.
Lando Norris was in the McLaren for the second day in a row, although the team avoided the softest compounds and his best time of 1m18.472s was set on the soft tyre. He was narrowly faster than Renault’s Artem Markelov, who took part in his first official Formula One test.
Toro Rosso continued to be the only team to use two cars at this test, with one car allocated for Pirelli testing.
Sean Gelael, who brought out the red flags on the first day of testing when he crashed the Pirelli-assigned Toro Rosso, was given another opportunity to impress today in the main Toro Rosso car, with Brendon Hartley and Pierre Gasly sharing driving duties in the dedicated Pirelli car.
Despite his crash on day one, Gelael has been the busiest driver over the two days, registering 231 laps, and a time of 1m19.046s was good enough for ninth place, ahead of regulars Pierre Gasly and Brendon Hartley.
HUNGARIAN IN-SEASON TEST, Day Two
1 George Russell Mercedes 1m15.575s, 116 laps
2 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m15.649s 0.074s, 131 laps
3 Jake Dennis Red Bull/Renault 1:17.012s 1.437s, 131 laps
4 Antonio Giovinazzi Sauber/Ferrari 1m17.558s 1.983s, 120 laps
5 Nikita Mazepin Force India/Mercedes 1m17.748s 2.173s, 51 laps
6 Robert Kubica Williams/Mercedes 1m18.451s 2.876s, 103 laps
7 Lando Norris McLaren/Renault 1m18.472s 2.897s, 73 laps
8 Artem Markelov Renault 1m18.496s 2.921s, 108 laps
9 Sean Gelael Toro Rosso/Honda 1m19.046s 3.471s, 122 laps
10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 1m19.790s 4.215s, 75 laps
11 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Honda 1m20.221s 4.646s, 67 laps
By: Luke Murphy
All images: Motorsport Images
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