Lewis Hamilton topped the times for the second free practice session, continuing his domination from FP1. There was drama before the session started as it was revealed that the problem which curtailed Sebastian Vettel’s FP1 was too big to fix ahead of FP2. The team revealed on Twitter that the wiring loom had been damaged and that “the team will use the time to fix it to be ready for FP3 tomorrow”.
Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg got out early in the session after missing out on a large chunk of time in first practice. It was the Mercedes duo who set the early pace, with Hamilton once again topping the times ahead of his team-mate. He was soon displaced by the sole Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo. Sauber made some changes to both of their cars before sending them out, in particular fixing the brake problems which caused Giedo van der Garde some problems in the first free practice session. Elsewhere Max Chilton had some software issues which confined his car to the garage.When he did get out he lost some of his rear bodywork by going over the kerbs. His session came to an end in the gravel following the chequered flag. He revealed there was nothing wrong with the car, he just locked up. McLaren and Mercedes both carried work out on their cars during the session, with McLaren adding ballast to Jenson Button’s car. Romain Grosjean’s Lotus stopped at the end of the pit-lane after an aborted practice start. The team asked him to stop the car and they came to retrieve him and wheeled him back down the pit-lane. He got out again but was brought in with ten minutes of the session remaining due to problems with their brakes. Team-mate Pastor Maldonado also had a lot of brake dust following a practice pit-stop. Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg complained about lack of grip towards the end of the session. It was a disappointing end of the session for Maldonado and Jean-Eric Vergne. Maldonado returned to the pits with a gearbox problem while Vergne lost a rear tyre on the exit of turn one.
In the second half of the session, teams filled up the cars and started completing some long runs. Hamilton’s pace was much faster than anyone else but it is important to remember that cars will have been running with different fuel loads. As the later lap times were much slower than the laps sent early in the session, it meant that Hamilton’s earlier lap was enough to see him significantly faster than team-mate Rosberg and Ricciardo. Behind that trio was local hero Fernando Alonso who finished ahead of team-mate Kimi Raikkonen. Next up were the McLaren duo led by Kevin Magnussen who was just a few hundredths ahead of Button. Felipe Massa and Maldonado who finished just behind the McLarens were also within a few hundredths of Magnussen’s time, indicating a close fight in the latter half of the top ten. Daniil Kvyat ended the session in tenth and rounding out the top ten.