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Max ends first day in Canada in P18: 'Unfortunately not many laps today'

Published on 08 June 2024 by Misha van der Kroon

After finishing fifth in FP1 in Canada, things took a turn for the worse for Max Verstappen in the second practice session with an eighteenth place. Due to problems with the hybrid system of his RB20, the reigning World Champion stayed in his garage for a large part of the session. Fernando Alonso in his Aston Martin set the fastest time, ahead of George Russell's Mercedes in P2. Lance Stroll set the third fastest time in his Aston Martin. At Circuit de Gilles Villeneuve, Charles Leclerc in his Ferrari and Daniel Ricciardo's RB completed the top five. Max's teammate at Oracle Red Bull Racing, Sergio Perez, set the tenth fastest time.

“Unfortunately not many laps for me in FP2,” Max said after the second free practice in Canada. “They told me to box due to some electrical issue which they are investigating now.”

Max continues: “I would have liked to drive more laps today, but I think it’s more important to figure out what actually happened and what kind of implications that will have for this weekend and for the rest of the year.”

At the start of the second free practice, it is cloudy and rain is expected: according to race control there is a 100% chance of rain during the session. Just before the lights turn green, a traffic jam forms at the end of the pit lane. The first car in the line is Max’s RB20, meaning that he is the first one to appear on track when the clock starts. He does so on the soft compound, despite the track still being quite wet in some places. The Red Bull driver immediately goes back into the pits, which might indicate that it’s still too wet for slicks. 

After a few minutes, the entire field has returned to the pits, except for Pierre Gasly in his Alpine. Charles Leclerc is at that moment under investigation. The Monegasque went out on track on the intermediate tyre, but this is not allowed yet, because the track is not officially declared wet by race control.   

It remains dry for the time being, so more cars head out on track. Gasly continues to improve the fastest time when the first drops of rain start to fall. Then Fernando Alonso sets the fastest time, as the drops continue to fall. Max Verstappen has also returned to the track. Stroll takes over P1 from his teammate Alonso, but not for long as the Spaniard strikes back. 

After his first flying lap, Max ends up in P4, but it doesn’t look like he is really pushing for a fast time. The track improves each lap, because the expected rain does not fall. Despite that, Max returns to the pits. His RB20 is smoking and the Dutchman calls over the on-board radio to his team: “Can you grab the fans? I smell smoke!” 

The car was cordoned off with tape by the team of Red Bull Racing, and the mechanics work with rubber gloves to prevent them from receiving an electric shock if there is still dangerous voltage present somewhere in the car. 

Meanwhile, Lando Norris is also under investigation for taking a shortcut in the chicane. With 25 minutes on the clock, the whole field is in the pits. In Verstappen’s garage the team is working hard on the RB20, and it is unclear if the World Champion will get back in the car today. 

With 19 minutes to go, Esteban Ocon heads out on the intermediate tyre. Shortly after, Alonso, Norris and Stroll follow on the same compound. Norris is again under investigation after rejoining the track in the wrong place after he went off. 

In the final phase of the training we understandably no longer see any improvements in the lap times, meaning that the Friday in Montreal comes to an end. 

Contest GP Canada: win a by Max Verstappen signed Racing cap!

Results second free practice Canada:

1Fernando AlonsoALOAston Martin Mercedes1:15.810 24
2George RussellRUSMercedes1:16.273+0.463s23
3Lance StrollSTRAston Martin Mercedes1:16.464+0.654s26
4Charles LeclercLECFerrari1:16.556+0.746s23
5Daniel RicciardoRICRB Honda RBPT1:16.731+0.921s22
6Kevin MagnussenMAGHaas Ferrari1:16.773+0.963s14
7Lewis HamiltonHAMMercedes1:16.908+1.098s26
8Yuki TsunodaTSURB Honda RBPT1:16.951+1.141s21
9Alexander AlbonALBWilliams Mercedes1:16.977+1.167s21
10Sergio PerezPERRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:17.041+1.231s18
11Esteban OconOCOAlpine Renault1:17.417+1.607s30
12Logan SargeantSARWilliams Mercedes1:17.496+1.686s21
13Carlos SainzSAIFerrari1:17.722+1.912s26
14Valtteri BottasBOTKick Sauber Ferrari1:17.817+2.007s20
15Nico HulkenbergHULHaas Ferrari1:17.903+2.093s19
16Oscar PiastriPIAMcLaren Mercedes1:19.008+3.198s19
17Zhou GuanyuZHOKick Sauber Ferrari1:19.087+3.277s16
18Max VerstappenVERRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:19.311+3.501s4
19Pierre GaslyGASAlpine Renault1:20.789+4.979s25
20Lando NorrisNORMcLaren Mercedes1:20.843+5.033s20