20/07/12 - 13:00
German Grand Prix
Hockenheimring • Free Practice 2

Free Practice 2

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Thanks for joining us for the two free practice sessions for the German Grand Prix today. The third, tomorrow morning, is at 10am UK time, with qualifying at 1pm. We'll be back then.


A glum Schumi looks on as they salvage his machine, and the day's driving is over, with Pastor Maldonado fastest in the second session but the real times set earlier today. Bit of a messy one, that.


Despite the red flag, a couple of riders had warm-down laps. Odd. Anyway, that's that for now.


Rosberg had already gone in it turns out - he's found out all he needs to know. Not really sure what people could have learned today, very patchy.


Red flag is out - Schumi skidded off into the barriers and his day is over, was back in 23rd after failing to progress from a promising start. He's fuming. Team-mate Rosberg is right up there though, second behind Maldonado, whose time won't be threatened.


Not much has been happening time-wise - but Schumacher has flown off!


Less rainy now but not enough time for it to dry off. Many will decide they've had enough, but there could be a few late fliers.


Ricciardo has gone off and he's also had enough. Seventh the Toro Rosso man.


Grosjean has had enough, he pits and gets out, he lies fifth as we stand, just under a second shy of Maldonado. Can't see much of a change, although with the Ferraris still out there you never know. They've slid right back - Massa 12 and Alonso 20 - but have the pace provided the adapt quickly.


It is now very wet and there is no impact on Maldonado's leading time from 15 mins ago.


Oops. Lewis flies off the hairpin, so no, he did not make the right decision. His engineer tells him to cool it.


Lewis, who is right down in 19th, has gone back out on the intermediates; Schumi is on the wets. Maldonado is leading, still on that aforementioned 1:27.46 time before the rained again.


The new downpour has swelled the previously drying puddles and channels and it's all getting a bit messy now.


Vettel pits, and takes on the slicks. Ballsy. And then it rains, so Red Bull shove him back in.


So, if the rain comes down heavily again then Maldonado could find himself with the fastest time - by the time everyone swicthes back to the wets there may not be much time left. Just as they were getting right for dry weather tyres. May as well stick to intermediates before pulling in?


The track is drying now, but the rain is coming. Not as quickly as predicted, but it's on its way.


Maldonada has shaved another second off now as we get close to moving under 1:27. The drops are getting narrower, but we still have half an our.


So the target really should be around 1:16, given the conditions. And given the rate at which they've been dropping the times, that should be possible.


Massa has now dipped under 1:30, the first to do so, but he's quickly joined by Perez as things start to get competitive.


We're losing about a second every two minutes now as they approach maximal speed. Grosjean is now under 1:31, all pretty fluid.


Getting much much faster as the try to exploit the slightly wet track and clear air; Schumacher is the first to dip under 1:33 as he comes back out on the intermediates, Vergbe and Grosjean following, but that doesn't last long as Alonso slips under 1:32.


But Rosberg's next lap sees him find some more and he dips under 1:34. 1:33.824 to be precise.


Boy these Ferraris are quick - Massa now finds a surge to move ahead on 1:34.576. Alonso a hundredth or so behind, Rosberg a second off the pace and Raikkonen sneaking into third.


Alonso steals almost a second off his previous best time as we dip under 1:35 now.


Rosberg, having switched to intermediates, blitzes away into the lead. Alonso snapping at his heels now.


Probably going to rain in 10 or so. Everyone's out now trying to post competitive times.


Alonso pops out and coolly rasps away to a super 1:37.395. Didn't even need to warm-up. Ferrari looking good then. Alonso the man to catch now.


Schumi is happy with that set of laps and he slides back in for a bit. Jenson is out now, as is Lewis.


Schumacher has moved top now, a cool 1:38.194. Vettel has also moved along nicely, five hundredths behind his fellow German. Rosberg shunted back to third as the big boys get serious.


So just after half an hour in, and we have Rosberg top of the timesheets with 1:39.021, Webber .28s behind, and Vergne .43s off. Vettel is almost a second back but hasn't really got going yet, while Button, Hamilton, Massa and Alonso are just about to go out after getting additional work done to their cars.


I say that and then Rosberg shaves around 0.6s off that! Now he's ahead, having eased into things, with Webber close behind. Vergne has improved with his next lap though.


So far Vergne has gone quickest - 1:39.843. Rosberg is around 0.13 behind.


Turns out Petrov's team put the wrong front tyre in the first session, or rather they made emergeny chancgs and the FIA weren't sent the right email - an admin error that has cost the team 2.5k euros. Ooops!


The rain is pretty much gone now, but rivers have been appearing on the track - turns 8-10. Expecting it to start again soon though.


Sebastian Vettel: "This is my home GP and I would be lying if I said I didn't care. Of course it's special. It's not a negative influence - it's great to have so many people cheering for you".


Vettel is out now, his first lap. He's never won in Hockenheim.


Pic and Rosberg are out, as is Vergne. Most of the drivers are taking it easy to see how the rain settles, it's calmed a touch though.


Interesting from Schumi then - he had said he would decide on his future in the summer but he appears to have put that back for now. He said so quite confidently, as if we should all know, so perhaps there has been a missed comment or miscommunication somewhere.


Jules Bianchi: "Conditions were quite difficult, we went out when it was bright but it rained and it was not easy. We did the best we could do which is important and in the end I am quite happy."


Michael Schumacher: "We have to make the best of what we have, and I think we can still win some titles this year. About next year you can keep asking questions but October is the moment when the situation might be answered."


Senna is out checking his machine and tyres. On his oddy knocky with many drivers still milling about the paddock.


It was showery then but it's absolutely tipping it down now - this doesn't promise to be too pretty.


In case you missed the first session earlier today, Jenson Button came out on top on a showery circuit.


Hello and welcome to our LIVE coverage of Free Practice 2 from the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim. All starting at 1pm UK time!