There were plenty of interruptions but still encouraging signs for the Honda-powered teams as the Dutch Grand Prix weekend got underway amid a lively atmosphere generated by Max’s Orange Army at Zandvoort.
It was a frustrating start to Friday’s running as FP1 was less than 20 minutes old when Sebastian Vettel stopped with a power unit failure and brought out the red flags. Concerns over the state of the car and an FIA network issue led to a long delay, with the session only resuming with six minutes remaining.
There was still enough time for Max to get a quick lap in and end up second fastest, with Pierre in 10th place. Sergio was down in 16th after not getting a clean run in the closing stages on such a busy track, but unfortunately Yuki didn’t set a time after a minor issue on his car needed investigating and he only completed three laps.
Further delays followed in FP2 as Lewis Hamilton caused a red flag early on by stopping on track and then Nikita Mazepin spun off at Turn 11 to also interrupt running. The later incident came as Max was on his flying lap on soft tyres and looked set to go quickest, meaning he had to abort and try again on used tyres, ending up fifth quickest as others could run on new sets.
Pierre was close behind Max in seventh place as both Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri showed strong pace, while Sergio was 12th. For Yuki, FP2 was a much more productive session as he completed 30 laps to make up for some of the lost running in the first session, ending up just 0.15s behind Sergio in 13th place.