Formula 1 world championship leader Lewis Hamilton led the way in second practice for the United States Grand Prix in a session disrupted by a crash for Romain Grosjean.

On a weekend in which he can clinch his sixth drivers’ world title, Hamilton posted a 1m33.232s during the qualifying simulation runs on Soft tyres to outpace Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc by 0.301s.

The Briton, who has won all but two of the seven races to be held at the Circuit of the Americas, gained heavily from picking up a tow behind Robert Kubica’s Williams along the back straight on his fastest lap.

FP1 pacesetter Max Verstappen turned in another strong lap to put his Red Bull third and just 0.014s behind Leclerc.

Sebastian Vettel wound up fourth and was 0.658s off the pace in the second Ferrari, while the German also suffered a spin at Turn 14 late in the session during the long runs.

Valtteri Bottas, who can delay Hamilton’s impending coronation by a further race if he outscores his Mercedes teammate by 22 points in Austin,  ended up fifth-fastest and over eight-tenths down on Hamilton’s benchmark.

Having enjoyed an encouraging morning session, Alexander Albon reported his Red Bull car felt “a lot more disconnected” than it did in FP1 as he finished sixth and nearly a second adrift of his teammate Verstappen.

Pierre Gasly impressed with a strong lap to set the seventh-fastest time in his Toro Rosso, while McLaren’s Carlos Sainz Jr, Racing Point driver Lance Stroll and the Alfa Romeo of Antonio Giovinazzi rounded out the top 10.

Daniel Ricciardo was 11th-fastest ahead of Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat and Renault teammate Nico Hulkenberg, with Lando Norris a lowly 14th in the second McLaren.

Sergio Perez struggled to match the pace demonstrated by Racing Point teammate Stroll as he ended up 1.8s adrift in 15th, with Kimi Raikkonen over two seconds down in 16th for Alfa Romeo.

It was another tough session for the Haas duo at the team’s home race with both drivers finishing well off the pace down in 17th and 18th.

Kevin Magnussen was the faster of the two drivers as Grosjean’s afternoon running lasted just 15 minutes before he brought out the red flags when he crashed in the first sector.

The Frenchman lost control of his VF19 coming through the high-speed Turns 5 and 6 and spun off into the barriers, with the impact destroying Haas’ brand new front wing in the process.

Once again the Williams pair propped up the timesheets, with George Russell half a second clear of teammate Kubica, who was four seconds off the pace in 20th.

Click here for 2019 F1 United States Grand Prix practice two results. 

 

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