Fernando Alonso made the most of an unusual second practice session for the Hungarian Grand Prix after a gradual cooling in track temperature skewed predictions as to who exactly emerged from the first day of running as a front runner.

Indeed, while teams are often inclined to throw on their optimum tyres in the latter stages of a session, a track that steadily lost pace as the 90-minute session progressed meant the top ten did not change at all in the final half hour.

Alonso timed his best lap to perfection, the Spaniard's effort a good 1.4secs quicker than morning pace setter Robert Kubica, as well as four tenths up on second fastest Heikki Kovalainen, who had actually led much of the session.

In the end, Alonso was the only driver to dip below the 1min 21secs barrier, but with the track's condition actually worsening in the final third of the session, its results are unlikely to offer a very accurate depiction of the remainder of the weekend.

Still, Kovalainen was an impressive second quickest, the Finn gradually lowering the fastest time before Alonso got the better of him, although the Renault driver did enough to oust Lewis Hamilton and push him down to third.

Although his 32 completed laps made the session a productive one, Hamilton did end it in the gravel trap at turn nine when he got offline whilst attempting to overtake Sakon Yamamoto. Felipe Massa was another driver to get it wrong, but he recovered back to the circuit to finish with the seventh best time, just behind sixth place Kimi Raikkonen.

Ahead of them were German duo Nico Rosberg and Nick Heidfeld, although both drivers were a considerable half a second off Alonso's pace. Giancarlo Fisichella made it two Renaults in the top ten in eighth, while Jarno Trulli and Kubica rounded out the leading positions in ninth and tenth.

Outside the top ten there were more prolific changes as the clock counted down, with Ralf Schumacher and Alex Wurz just missing out on finishing with a single digit position to their name in 11th and 12th.

They led Red Bull duo Mark Webber and David Coulthard, while Anthony Davidson pumped in a strong late effort to go 15th, ahead of both the Hondas who slipped out of the top ten they occupied in the morning to finish 16th for Jenson Button and 18th for Rubens Barrichello. It is worth noting though that Button produced the most laps in the session at 47. Takuma Sato split them in 17th.

Vitantonio Liuzzi at least got the better of new team-mate Sebastian Vettel this time, although there is very little to separate the Scuderia Toro Rosso duo at this early stage in the weekend. Adrian Sutil and Yamamoto meanwhile filled positions 21st and 22nd again, although the Japanese driver did at least manage to slice five tenths off the gap to the leaders.

 

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