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Formula 1 Spanish GP

F1 Spanish GP Live Commentary and Updates – FP1 & FP2

Friday's action from the 10th round of the 2024 Formula 1 season.

F1 returns to Barcelona for the 34th race around the familiar Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

The grand prix weekend marks the start of a slog for F1 personnel, with five events scheduled to take place across a six-week period.

After Max Verstappen and Red Bull returned to winning ways last time out in Canada, can McLaren, Ferrari or Mercedes put pressure on the reigning champions? 

FP1 starts at 12:30pm BST (13:30pm local time) followed by FP2 at 4:00pm BST (5:00pm local time).

By: Ewan Gale, James Newbold

Leaderboard

  1. Hamilton, Mercedes
  2. Sainz, Ferrari
  3. Norris, McLaren
  4. Gasly, Alpine
  5. Verstappen, Red Bull
  6. Leclerc, Ferrari
  7. Piastri, McLaren
  8. Russell, Mercedes
  9. Ocon, Alpine
  10. Bottas, Sauber
Summary
  • Hamilton leads Sainz and Norris in tight second practice for F1 Spanish GP, with less than a tenth splitting the top three
  • Verstappen only fifth in FP2 as Gasly impresses for Alpine
  • Flavio Briatore makes F1 return as executive advisor at Alpine 
Status: Stopped

We're calling it a day on the live text blog now, but do make sure to check out the website this evening for all the news and reaction from the paddock - including our usual pace analysis digging into what the long run times actually mean. We hope to see you again here tomorrow, ahead of FP3 at 11:30 BST and qualifying at 15:00 BST. Until then, it's goodbye from us!

We're due to have dry conditions tomorrow, before projections of rain for Sunday that could spice things up somewhat. Barcelona and rain have a history of creating memorable cocktails after all: Michael Schumacher in 1996 ring any bells?

Tomorrow is a new day. And if FP2 is anything to go by, qualifying promises to be a thrilling one with multiple teams potentially in the mix. Can't say fairer than that, can you?

Missed any of the action from FP2? Then you're in luck - click here for the report handily summarising everything, thus preventing you from needing to do a lot of scrolling.

It's never wise to read too much into FP2, but the times do give an indication of who will be happier heading into Saturday's all-important qualifying here. By the same token, they tell us who won't be too chipper, and on home turf for Fernando Alonso the Aston Martins clocking in 14th and 18th will not be a welcome sight for the Silverstone team.

Verstappen did state yesterday that "I don't think it will be like the beginning of the season" when Red Bull was dominant. Could his prediction be coming true? Perez was only 13th in FP2, 0.817s back from Hamilton.

Three drivers are within a tenth at the top of the order as FP2 comes to a close, with Mercedes, Ferrari and McLaren split by 0.055s. Alpine is an additional interloper, with Pierre Gasly fourth ahead of Max Verstappen's leading Red Bull in fifth.

Out comes the checkered flag as FP2 comes to an end with Lewis Hamilton at the top of the timesheets. Could this be the weekend he ends a win drought dating back to Jeddah 2021?

Zhou's Sauber is in the garage and the Chinese driver is out of his car. It appears his session is over with a few minutes left to run.

Tsunoda has a perfunctory message for his RB engineers. "Front under rotation sucks!" he yells.

"I hit the floor pretty hard," says Norris after running wide over the kerbs at Turn 9. He's not wrong, as the sparks emanating from under his McLaren attest.

Just because the cars are running more fuel, it doesn't mean the drivers aren't pushing. Hamilton now dips two wheels into the gravel on the exit of Turn 12, but no harm done.

More on Briatore now: Alpine team boss Bruno Famin says he "doesn't really mind about the past" after the team announced the controversial Italian as its new executive advisor earlier today. You can read what he said here.

Just how representative the order today is for qualifying will only become clear tomorrow, but Alpine will surely take some encouragement from having both its cars in the top 10. Ocon, ninth in the times, is 0.502s down on Hamilton's benchmark while Gasly is within two tenths and ahead of Verstappen. Not a phrase we've said much this year.

Leclerc is the only driver not on the track at present. Some suspension tinkering is occurring in view of the TV cameras down at Ferrari.

After its cars were the first to put on the softs and briefly surged up the order, Williams has regressed to occupying 19th and 20th positions with Albon ahead of Sargeant. They are 1.5s and 1.8s respectively down on Hamilton's benchmark time, with the rest of the field covered by 1.1s. Work to do then, back at Grove.

It appears somewhat unlikely that we will see more laptime improvements in this session, as those cars that are running on softs it seems are doing so with more fuel on-board judging by times that are multiple seconds down on what they were doing earlier.

Despite sitting out FP1 earlier to give Oliver Bearman his latest rookie running, Nico Hulkenberg is right on the pace of Haas team-mate Kevin Magnussen. The two are line astern in P11 and P12, just 0.032s apart.

Perez clocks a 1m14.081s on his first soft run but it's only good enough for 13th.

Intriguingly, Hamilton is fastest so far despite not having a purple sector to his name. Verstappen, Norris and Gasly are the quickest drivers respectively through the first, middle and last sectors.

Verstappen has returned to the track on a set of mediums, but Perez - who has slipped to the bottom of the pile as the only driver yet to set a time on softs - has now bolted on a set of the red side-walled tyres. 

Hamilton went for another lap on the same set of softs that had already put him top and was four tenths slower. But that would still have put him seventh, ahead of Russell.

Where did that come from Pierre Gasly? The Alpine drive barges his way into fourth, 0.179s down on Hamilton, to push Verstappen back into fifth. That wasn't in the script, was it?

Now Hamilton goes fastest, with a 1m13.264s to go 0.22s quicker than Sainz. In a flurry of improvements, Piastri went sixth after ditching the hards to go just ahead of Russell, who topped the early going on the mediums but wasn't as effective as Hamilton on their first soft runs.

Zhou meanwhile is raging at Tsunoda, who he feels blocked him through the high-speed final sector. How good is it by the way to have that back again after the tedious slow-speed chicane that for many years blighted the end of the lap here?

Still, he's much closer to the summit than Stroll, who is over a second down on his first run with the softs. Alonso does go quicker than his team-mate, but it's only good enough for P11 for the other home race hero in the Aston Martin.

There's just 0.033s between Sainz and his former team-mate Norris at the head of the timesheets, but Verstappen can't match either and falls 0.218s behind in third.

Leclerc is unable to match the home hero and lands up 0.311s down on team-mate Sainz, before Norris pushes him back to third. Bottas launches into fourth, ahead of the Haas drivers Magnussen and Hulkenberg in fifth and sixth.

Now Sainz makes his bid for the top spot and snatches it from Russell's earlier medium gambit. A 1m13.286s is the best time of the session so far as teams enter quali sim mode.

Albon fires in a 1m14.807s to go into sixth, splitting the two Ferraris for the time being. 

A 1m15.070s from Sargeant answers that question - a roughly 1.7s gain from the hard to the soft puts him P7 for now. What will those switching from the medium to soft manage to achieve? Norris and both Ferraris will soon give us an answer.