Daniel Ricciardo takes second free practice ahead of Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen in Baku
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News April 27, 2018 Updated: 8:16 AM PT
BAKU, Azerbaijan — Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo finished on top in the second free practice ahead of Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen. Windy conditions and a dusty track plagued many drivers as they struggled for grip on the 3.7 mile street circuit.
“I was very happy today. With a street circuit you need confidence in yourself and in the car. The car was well behaved and didn’t take any confidence away from me. There was a good relationship with myself and the car so we will build on that tomorrow,” Ricciardo said.
Ricciardo finished 0.069s ahead of Raikkonen. Ricciardo’s Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen finished third after he suffered a crash in the earlier practice session. Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas, who topped the first session, took fourth, 0.083 ahead of teammate Lewis Hamilton in fifth.
“Overall, we weren’t quick enough today, both Red Bull and Ferrari seem to be ahead of us at the moment. So we’ve got some work to do. I’m going to be knocking on the doors of all the engineers overnight, so that we can hopefully make the right changes,” Hamilton said.
Fernando Alonso moved into sixth as McLaren continued work on the upgrades they brought this weekend. Esteban Ocon finished seventh for Force India followed by Renault’s Carlos Sainz in eighth.
Kevin Magnussen took ninth, improving on his time in the first practice session by 3.457s seconds. Nico Hulkenberg finished 10th along with fellow countryman Sebastian Vettel in 11th. Vettel was a victim of the dusty track conditions as he overshot Turn 2 running of into the escape road.
“I made some mistakes under braking, but I think that the long run was a little better. I think we can improve the car for tomorrow and it should be ok. It’s just the beginning after all. We have to understand what the car needs and we have a little bit of time to reset. Hopefully, it can be better tomorrow,” Vettel said.
Sergio Perez ended the day in 12th for Force India with Romain Grosjean in 13th. Lance Stroll finished just 0.034s behind Grosjean in 14th for Williams.Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly finished 15th after struggling with the grid throughout most of the session. Charles Leclerc, who continues to improve in his debut season, finished 16th for Sauber.
Sergey Sirotkin only managed to get in a few clean laps as traffic hindered most of his time on track, leaving him to finish 17th for Williams. Brendon Harley finished 18th in the second Toro Rosso with Alonso’s teammate Stoffel Vandoorne in 19th.
Leclerc’s teammate Marcus Ericsson finished out the bottom of the time-sheet in 20th.