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A day for Mercedes to forget as Perez leads Red Bull 1-2

Azerbaijan,Sports,Motorsports

Author : Indo Asian News Service

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Baku (Azerbaijan), June 4 (IANS) Mercedes had a forgettable second practice session on Friday as both drivers -- Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas - were out of the top 10 while Sergio Perez led a Red Bull one-two with teammate Max Verstappen ahead of the Formula One Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Seven-time world champion Hamilton was far back in 11th while Bottas was 16th as Mercedes seemed to struggle just like they did in Monaco two weeks ago.

Perez posted a best 1 minute 42.115 seconds around the 6.003km Baku City street circuit as Formula One returned to the city after two years, reports DPA.

Azerbaijan was removed from the 2020 calendar due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Championship leader Verstappen was 0.101 seconds behind his teammate Perez after topping the morning session, and Carlos Sainz of Ferrari was third.

Verstappen leads the drivers' standings with a four-point advantage over Hamilton, while Red Bull top the constructors' championship ahead of Mercedes by a point.

The race in Baku is the chance for the Silver Arrows to bounce back, but the practice results show the team is still badly off pace after struggling on the streets of Monaco two weeks ago.

In the other Ferrari, Charles Leclerc was fourth. The Monegasque crashed at Turn 8 and lost his front wings, but unlike his 2019 Baku qualifying crash and the recent incident in Monaco, he was able to reverse and return to the pits.

--IANS

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