For this second free practice session at Paul-Ricard, it was again a red car that proved to be the fastest. But if the morning was Charles Leclerc who had set the fastest time, on the strength of its brand new floor, on Friday evening it was Carlos Sainz who set the best time. The Spaniard should start the weekend with a new power unit which will condemn him to a start at the back of the grid on Sunday. Max Verstappen’s Red Bull finished four-tenths behind the Maranello cars, which seemed to be suffering from the heat (30° at 6 p.m.) which severely degraded their tyres.
Lewis Hamilton, who finally got into his Mercedes after having sold it to Nick de Vries during the previous session, quickly got into the rhythm of this W13 with a new nose and the rear of the floor reworked and which closer and closer to a potential success (less than a second behind the Ferraris).
Among the French, Pierre Gasly continues to surf on an Alpha Tauri finally renewed thanks to a package of innovations which worked well in the morning and which was installed on the car of his teammate Yuki Tsunoda. For his compatriot Esteban Ocon, the case is less off to a good start. The novelties brought to the Alpine seem to work less well. The Norman finished more than two seconds from the best time and six tenths from his teammate Fernando Alonso.