2022 Spanish Grand Prix - Friday
WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED
- Ferrari driver and championship leader Charles Leclerc set the fastest time of the day in FP2 (1m19.670s) ahead of Mercedes drivers George Russell and Lewis Hamilton, all on the P Zero Red soft tyre. Leclerc also went fastest in FP1, this time ahead of his team mate Carlos Sainz.
- All three tyres were used today, in a conventional run plan that focussed on the P Zero White hard followed by the soft in FP1, then the P Zero Yellow medium followed by the soft again in FP2.
- Conditions were warm and dry all day in Spain, with the FP2 session getting underway in ambient temperatures of 33 degrees and track temperatures of 45 degrees.
- At the moment, there’s an estimated performance gap of around 1.3 seconds between the hard and the medium tyre, with a 1.1-second gap between the medium and soft. Generally speaking, the rate of track evolution in Barcelona is not particularly high.
“The free practice sessions went largely according to expectations: after Bahrain, this was the first big ‘degradation’ circuit of the year and we saw track temperatures that peaked at nearly 50 degrees this afternoon, adding to the challenge: especially for the soft tyre. The front-left tyre was the one that was most stressed and that’s going to be the limiting factor, probably leading to a two-stop race for most drivers. How that two-stop is run will be the big question, with the teams having to manage their tyre allocation very carefully tomorrow in order to end up with the tyres they want for the race, bearing in mind also that they have to keep one obligatory set of medium and one set of hard. We saw some quite big gaps here between the compounds in free practice, a bit bigger than we expected this weekend, and that will certainly influence the strategy decisions ahead as well.”
- In Formula 2 Jack Doohan took his second pole of the year for Virtuosi, with all the drivers using the P Zero Red soft tyre for the qualifying shoot-out. Prema’s Jehan Daruvala held the top spot until just before the end, when he was overhauled by Doohan and Hitech’s Juri Vips: who made his F1 debut in FP1 earlier today with Red Bull. MP Motorsport’s Felipe Drugovich, who went quickest in free practice this morning, will start Saturday’s sprint race from pole after qualifying in P10 today. In the warm conditions this afternoon, with track temperatures in excess of 35 degrees, getting the best out of the soft tyres at the right moment was the key to setting a top time.
- Trident driver Roman Stanek claimed his first Formula 3 pole, using the P Zero White hard tyre nominated this weekend. Stanek went fastest in the closing seconds of the session, from championship leader Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix). However, Trident’s Zane Maloney will start Saturday’s reverse-grid sprint race from pole, by virtue of qualifying 12th. The drivers also had the medium tyre available for free practice only as their carry-over set from the previous round at Imola. The hard delivered peak performance over a single lap, with all the teams running three sets in qualifying.