“The car is okay, we didn’t have any major problems. But they are definitely still too fast for us at the moment,” said Hamilton after the practice session with a view to the competition. The Brit is not happy with the balance and changes the settings several times during training, especially on the front axle: “We have to improve our setup, but we lack downforce. That is also the reason for the half-second gap between us.”
World Cup opponent Verstappen goes confidently into Saturday after training. “It was a pretty good day and a positive start to the weekend. We have a good feeling,” he said. “This morning the track was still very dirty, but that got better in the second practice session and so did the feeling with the car. It looks like things are going quite well,” reports the Dutchman.
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner does not want to overestimate the apparently strong form of his team yet. “Mercedes still has something in its pocket, we haven’t seen its full potential yet,” believes the Briton and explains: “With the GPS data, we can see when they crank the engine and where not.” For Horner, the gap is therefore significantly smaller than on the timesheet: “There is less than a tenth between the cars and we will see that tomorrow.”
After already established penalties, Mercedes and Honda are tied on Mexico Friday: Both Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) and Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri) have to change their drive unit and therefore start the race from the back row.
Result of the 2nd free practice Mexico GP
2. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) – Mercedes +0.424 sec.
3. Lewis Hamilton (UK) – Mercedes +0.509
4. Sergio Perez (Mexico) – Red Bull +0.570
5. Carlos Sainz Jr. (Spain) – Ferrari +1.017
6. Pierre Gasly (France) – Alpha Tauri +1.128
7. Charles Leclerc (Monaco) – Ferrari +1,304
8. Yuki Tsunoda (Japan) – Alpha Tauri +1,343
9. Sebastian Vettel (Heppenheim) – Aston Martin +1.380
10. Fernando Alonso (Spain) – Alpine +1.431
11. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) – Alfa Romeo +1,540
12. Lando Norris (UK) – McLaren +1.678
13. Antonio Giovinazzi (Italy) – Alfa Romeo +1.926
14. Esteban Ocon (France) – Alpine +2,130
15. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) – McLaren +2,220
16. Mick Schumacher (Gland / Switzerland) – Haas +2,319
17. Lance Stroll (Canada) – Aston Martin +2,429
18. Nicholas Latifi (Canada) – Williams +3,519
19. Nikita Mazepin (Russia) – Haas +4,280
20. George Russell (Great Britain) – Williams – no time