Max Verstappen topped both practice sessions on Friday in Jeddah; Fernando Alonso split the Red Bulls to finish second under the lights; Lewis Hamilton only 11th for Mercedes; Watch Saudi Arabian GP final practice live on Saturday at 1.30pm on Sky Sports F1
Last Updated: 17/03/23 6:18pm
Max Verstappen completed a Friday practice double at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix as Fernando Alonso finished second to provide further evidence of Aston Martin’s remarkable progress.
Having led a Red Bull one-two from Sergio Perez in the opening session, Verstappen, who eased to victory at the season-opener in Bahrain earlier this month, was once more untouchable as he delivered a 1:29.603 to finish 0.2s clear of Alonso.
Perez, who sealed a Red Bull one-two in Bahrain, was a tenth behind Alonso in third at F1’s fastest street circuit, in the night-time conditions that mirror those Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s race will take place in.
Alpine delivered an improved display as fourth-placed Esteban Ocon and team-mate Pierre Gasly were split by Mercedes’ George Russell.
Verstappen gets very close to the wall during a flying lap in P2 of the Saudi Arabian GP.
However, Russell’s team-mate Lewis Hamilton endured a far more challenging session as he finished down in 11th, just behind Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, who underwhelmed having been expected to be Verstappen’s biggest challengers in Saudi Arabia.
There were suspicions that Ferrari were running their engines significantly below full capacity, as the team experimented after both drivers were forced to take new power units following technical issues in Bahrain.
More to follow…
Formula 1 street racing is back! Watch the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix live on Sky Sports F1 this weekend. Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s race are live at 5pm. Get Sky Sports