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Belgian Grand Prix - Practice 
5th-Sep-2008 08:00 am
f1
Spa is one of my favourite circuits - Silverstone is #1 (partly because I've driven it too!) but Spa is right up there, even though it's been simplified (to make it "safer" apparently).

There's rain forecast for this weekend, but right now it's 17°C and dry; 80% humidity; 3.1m/s wind.

My notes are behind this cut as always...

Bridgestone have brought their hard and medium compound tyres.

Massa was fastest in today's earlier practice session (1:47.284) followed by Raikkonen and Hamilton.
It was damp and almost everyone ran wide, especially at the hairpin.

SV is first out for the second practice session
SV 1:50.819
LH 1:48.805 - sector times are 31.8, 47.5, 29.3
(JT P2)
(DC P2)
(JT P2)
(FM P2)
Cars head for the pits as rain is imminent
It's only a light shower, although some corners are wetter than others
JT tells his team that it's raining; they tell him to pit if it's too wet
MW off at Rivage - across the gravel and taps the tyre wall
TG runs wide across the grass
The rain seems to be getting heavier
30mins gone = 60mins left
Patrick Head (Willliams' direrctor of engineering) says "the car is not very good in fast corners"!
Track is empty; LH is out of the McLaren, talking to his mechanics
SB has taken the Toro Rosso out on dry tyres ... and comes back into the pits
A lot of drivers out of their cars, waiting for it to dry up
Speed show a replay of the start of the 1998 race, when there was a major collision at the start involving about half the field - I remember it well, watching wheels and bodywork fly!
After a quiet 15mins or so, SV and SB are on track
KR loses the tail under braking, spins and clouts the barriers backwards, ripping off his rear wing
GF repeats KR's incident (well, coming out of instead of entering Turn 9) and lost his rear wing too
Red flags are out - session stopped (but the clock keeps running)
Looks like GF spun on fluid dropped by KR's Ferrari, and that's why the session's been stopped
60mins gone = 30mins left
Replay of GF's incident suggests maybe something (a cooler?) broke on the Force India car, causing him to spin and dumping fluids
Another replay shows KR rejoining the track after his accident - no sign of fluids there, but the tyre wall probably contained a lot of water
22mins left and the track is green again
NP spins under braking for Turn 9 - taps the tyre wall backwards and breaks something off
10mins left
NR goes fastest in Sector 3 - times are improving even though it's still damp
5mins left
HK 1:48.790
FA 1:48.454
1min left - drivers are slowing because the rain is getting harder

So the fastest time in the 2nd practice session (Alonso, 1:48.454) is over a second slower than the 1st session (Massa, 1:47.284).
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