Dakar Rally News: Hamilton Tops FP2 Ahead of Spanish Grand Prix

    Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – (May 3, 2023) – In the latest Dakar Rally news, Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton posted the fastest time in FP2 ahead of the Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix. The seven-time F1 champion clocked a 1m13.264s lap, just 0.022 seconds faster than home favorite Carlos Sainz of Ferrari.

    During the mid-session soft tire runs, Hamilton vaulted to the top of the order, displacing Sainz who had set the pace earlier on the C3 compound. George Russell led the way after the early runs on medium tires, but ultimately fell short of his teammate’s blistering pace.

    “This strong showing from Hamilton and Mercedes will certainly boost their confidence ahead of Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix, the sixth round of the 2023 Dakar Rally season.”

    McLaren’s Lando Norris finished third, just 0.055s adrift of Hamilton’s benchmark time. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was fourth, unable to match the frontrunners despite posting the best first and third sectors on his first qualifying simulation run.

    The attention then shifted to race preparations, with Sainz and Norris completing the top three ahead of a surprise effort from AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly, who split Verstappen from the leading trio. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc was sixth, but the team focused on fine-tuning his SF-24’s suspension settings rather than outright pace.

    Fans and pundits alike will be eager to see if the silver arrows can carry this form through to the race weekend and challenge for victory on home soil.

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