We’re reaching the crunch part of the F1 season and this weekend could see Nico Rosberg win his first world title. Defending champion Lewis Hamilton is battling hard though and he dominated practice on Friday.
The permutations are all in the favour of the German driver if he can either win here on Sunday or continue the Mercedes dominance and keep finishing in the top two. Even If Lewis wins the final two races, if Rosberg finishes right behind him he’ll win the title. So it could still be a case of all that hard work for nothing for Hamilton.
First practice on Friday saw Hamilton the quickest by 0.096 seconds with Max Verstappen in second and Rosberg back in third 0.23 seconds behind the English driver. Daniel Ricciardo finished in fourth with Williams driver Valtteri Bottas in fifth. It was a poor session for Ferrari with Vettel and Raikkonen ninth and tenth though they were only using the medium tyre. It wasn’t a great time for Vettel though as he had a spin at the Mergulho corner.
Hamilton was also fastest in second practice finishing 0.03 seconds ahead of Rosberg. It was a good session for Williams with Bottas in third and Massa, in his final home GP before retirement, in fourth. He’d love to finish so high on Sunday. Daniel Ricciardo finished in fifth and Verstappen sixth, they were half a second down on the Mercedes. Ferrari struggled again with Vettel seventh and Raikkonen eighth.
Hamilton certainly appears to be totally focused on winning this weekend and for once is happy with his car. “There is more to come,” he said. “In previous years, I always struggled with the rear end and this weekend that doesn’t seem to be the problem. I hope that continues but also I prepared a little bit differently this weekend and it seems to be working.” He may only have finished 0.03 seconds ahead in second practice but earlier on it was much wider at 0.23 seconds.
Sunday is going to be even more interesting with the weather forecast to be cool and showery. That might help break the Mercedes dominance and make the title battle between Hamilton and Rosberg even more interesting. Best have your calculators ready If it’s not the usual Mercedes one-two.