Sat, Sep 08, 2012 - Page 20 News List

Hamilton gets fastest time in second practice

AP and AFP, MONZA, Italy

Lewis Hamilton had the fastest time in yesterday’s second practice session at the Italian Grand Prix, as championship leader Fernando Alonso endured more problems with his Ferrari.

Hamilton posted a time of 1 minute, 25.29 seconds, just 0.038 seconds faster than McLaren teammate Jenson Button.

Alonso was third, 0.058 seconds behind Hamilton, but struggled with his car in both sessions.

After a suspected engine failure six minutes from the end of the morning session, Alonso had a brake problem halfway through the afternoon outing.

The Spaniard eventually returned to the track, only to encounter another technical problem with his car 25 minutes from the end of the session.

Michael Schumacher was fastest in first practice, posting a time of 1:25.422. The Mercedes driver was 10th in the afternoon.

Meanwhile, McLaren team head Martin Whitmarsh said yesterday that McLaren remain completely relaxed about their drivers’ line-up for next year, despite ongoing speculation linking Briton Lewis Hamilton with a switch to Mercedes.

Whitmarsh said he feels calm about talks over a new contract with the 2008 world champion and added that he believed that interest in the issue was more intense in the media than inside the McLaren team.

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