McLaren were well off the pace in Friday practice, trailing by over two seconds on average – much more, than perhaps expected.
Fernando Alonso was 16th in Free Practice One, clocking 2.6s slower lap times than FP1 leader Lewis Hamilton.
While team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne was a low 19th place, 2.8s off the pace.
|2018 Formula 1 French Grand Prix Practice One Results|
While Free Practice Two was much more eye pleasing with Fernando Alonso in 8th place, it was with a 1.9s gap to the Mercedes’ of Lewis Hamilton.
Team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne ended up in 13th place, 0.8s slower than Alonso, 2.6s slower than Hamilton.
Whether McLaren & Alonso will be able to reach the third part of qualifying tomorrow, for the first time since Monaco, is a question that only time will answer, but it will be a tough ask, considering the McL33’s pace today.
Fernando Alonso, Post-Practice:
“Conditions were a bit tricky today – the wind played a big role in FP1, then changed direction this afternoon. The track is close to the seas, so we’ll get changeable winds all the time.”
“It was a fairly regular Friday, spent trying to understand and learn the circuit and develop a good base set-up.”
“The track is good; very smooth, the new asphalt is very grippy, which is always a help for a driver. I quite like the last sector, Turns 11 and 12 are quite challenging, so we may well see some action there on Sunday. There might also be a possibility to alter your racing line to follow the car ahead a little bit more closely. Let’s see if that results in some overtaking during the race.”
“Due to the VSC at the end of FP2, we’re still missing a little bit of long-run info about the tyres – but we’ll try to recover that in tomorrow’s practice. There are a couple of set-up possibilities still to explore tomorrow, so hopefully we’ll be a bit more competitive.”
|2018 Formula 1 French Grand Prix Practice Two Results|