Testing – Ferrari’s Sebasitan Vettel recovered from an afternoon spin to set the pace ahead of Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
Following a morning of gradually building up speed, Ferrari were one of the busier teams in during the afternoon session of a very cold second day of testing.
Due to the uncertain track conditions, teams were allowed to run throughout the day, as opposed to stopping for a designated lunch break.
This appeared to be the correct call as a dry spell in the early afternoon was followed by light snow in the second half of the afternoon.
Not long into the afternoon session Vettel spun his Ferrari at turn two, moments after setting a personal best lap time.
The red flags were deployed but Vettel recovered his SF71H to the pit lane and appeared to have no lasting damage, despite shedding debris.
A mid-afternoon run on the soft tyres resulted in the benchmark dropping to a 1:19.673, with Vettel leading Bottas, who also went faster in the afternoon.
Bottas’ best time of 1:19.976 was three tenths slower than Vettel’s, but the Mercedes man set his personal best lap time on medium compound tyres.
Both teams fell agonisingly short of the 100-lap mark in what appeared to be a reliable day for the constructors’ championship rivals.
Stoffel Vandoorne’s morning run on the new-for-2018 Pirelli hyper softs remained his personal best, which was good enough for third.
His 1:20.325 lap time was 0.001 quicker than Max Verstappen’s Red Bull. The Dutchman was, however, running the medium compound tyres.
The only driver introduced in the afternoon was Williams’ development and reserve driver Robert Kubica, who registered a 1:21.495 to go over three tenths faster than colleague Sergey Sirotkin’s morning effort.
The evenly-contested midfield battle resulted in Carlos Sainz (Renault), Pierre Gasly (Toro Rosso), Kubica, Sirotkin and Esteban Ocon (Force India) taking 5th – 9th places and covering only six tenths of a second.
Sauber’s Charles Leclerc (who brought out the red flags briefly for a spin at turn four) and Haas’ Kevin Magnussen completed the order.
To view the full results from the session, click here.