Hungaroring F2: George Russell leads practice, more start problems

George Russell topped yet another Formula 2 practice session at the Hungaroring, while the championship will not return to safety car starts despite more start trouble

Hungaroring F2: George Russell leads practice, more start problems

Russell topped the session on multiple occasions, his final flying lap of 1m28.886s good enough to take his third straight fastest time in an F2 practice session.

The championship had switched to rolling starts behind the safety car for the Red Bull Ring and Silverstone due to "safety reasons" following the difficulty with the new F2 2018's tricky-to-operate clutch.

F2 acted between the British and Hungarian rounds by bringing software updates and a new clutch basket, giving teams 100kms of testing that equated to around 10 practice starts per driver in the break.

But in the practice starts at the end of Friday's session, there was still trouble as two cars stalled. F2 confirmed that the race will still feature a standing start, returning to normal procedure.

Nyck de Vries has had an up and down season, but repeated his tight-circuit form from Monaco and Baku by taking second, 0.3 seconds off Russell, with Sergio Sette Camara of Carlin in third.

Luca Ghiotto and Alexander Albon - the latter among those to top the session for a spell - rounded out the top five.

Ralph Boschung of MP is looking to end a run of poor reliability having not scored in five races, and was faster than ex-Formula 1 driver team-mate Roberto Merhi (who was 12th) to take sixth, ahead of Nirei Fukuzumi. The Honda junior stalled in the pits during the practice starts.

Landon Norris couldn't match team-mate Sette Camara and took eighth ahead of Jack Aitken, who will be looking to channel the form he had at this circuit when he took a win, pole and fastest lap in GP3 last year.

Artem Markelov had two lock-ups, and a sideways moment trying to drive around Roy Nissany, all at Turn 1. But he managed to get his Russian Time machine into the top 10.

The session was interrupted by an unusual crash for Honda protege and Markelov's team-mate Tadasuke Makino.

His car speared into the barriers at Turn 3, an unlikely place to crash, with 35 minutes to go, prompting a 10-minute red flag. Makino was unhurt.

Practice times

Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 George Russell ART Grand Prix 1m28.886s - 14
2 Nyck de Vries Pertamina Prema Theodore Racing 1m29.188s 0.302s 12
3 Sergio Sette Camara Carlin 1m29.269s 0.383s 15
4 Luca Ghiotto Campos Vexatec Racing 1m29.333s 0.447s 15
5 Alexander Albon DAMS 1m29.337s 0.451s 14
6 Ralph Boschung MP Motorsport 1m29.390s 0.504s 11
7 Nirei Fukuzumi BWT Arden 1m29.441s 0.555s 13
8 Lando Norris Carlin 1m29.478s 0.592s 14
9 Jack Aitken ART Grand Prix 1m29.534s 0.648s 14
10 Artem Markelov RUSSIAN TIME 1m29.555s 0.669s 15
11 Nicholas Latifi DAMS 1m29.566s 0.680s 13
12 Roberto Merhi MP Motorsport 1m29.636s 0.750s 15
13 Louis Deletraz Charouz Racing System 1m29.862s 0.976s 17
14 Maximilian Guenther BWT Arden 1m29.926s 1.040s 14
15 Antonio Fuoco Charouz Racing System 1m30.053s 1.167s 15
16 Arjun Maini Trident 1m30.103s 1.217s 17
17 Roy Nissany Campos Vexatec Racing 1m30.113s 1.227s 13
18 Alessio Lorandi Trident 1m30.573s 1.687s 16
19 Sean Gelael Pertamina Prema Theodore Racing 1m30.574s 1.688s 15
20 Tadasuke Makino RUSSIAN TIME 1m31.072s 2.186s 4


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Series FIA F2
Drivers George Russell
Author Jack Benyon
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