Perez and Palmer wreck at tricky Turn 8

Mark Scott

There is very little margin for error in Baku – especially now that the teams are equipped with bigger, wider 2017 beasts – as Sergio Perez found out very quickly with Jolyon Palmer joining him later…

But Lewis Hamilton was all smiles as he arrived at the track on Friday morning. This circuit was not particularly kind to him last year but he is fresh off the back of a dominant win in Canada.

Force India also caught the eye for other reasons, too, as Esteban Ocon, seen here with his bright pink lid, donned the team’s new overalls which can only be described as having a raspberry ripple effect.

There was also the usual bad news bulletin from McLaren-Honda, with the beleaguered team racking up a ton of grid penalties due to a number of power unit element changes. Will this ever end?

Daniel Ricciardo, meanwhile, was eager to get down to business on what was a promising start to day for Red Bull, who finished FP1 in 1-2.

As Sebastian Vettel looked on…

But both Ferrari drivers would suffer from spin-outs on a grubby, hot street circuit in Baku.

Under-pressure Jolyon Palmer was also looking to stay out of trouble…

The surrounding apartments helped set the scene for the weekend.

And there was also plenty of talk about Sauber, but sadly off the track as the team come to terms with Monisha Kaltenborn’s ‘sudden’ departure as team principal.

But stealing the show was Sergio Perez, who found out just how much of a tight squeeze it was at Turn 8.

Giving his mechanics plenty of work to do ahead of FP2…

Daniil Kvyat gets ready for FP2.

The escape roads were arguably the most used pieces of tarmac throughout FP2 as, despite having already had an entire session on the track, the drivers still struggled to find the perfect braking points.

Kvyat tagged the wall with the right rear of his Toro Rosso, dragging bits of hoarding onto the circuit. The Virtual Safety Car made a brief appearance as a marshal did the 10m dash to retrieve the bits of wall.

Jolyon Palmer crashed at the ‘Sergio Perez’ corner, otherwise known as Turn 8.

Lance Stroll impressed in FP2 as, fresh from his Canadian GP points, the Williams rookie finished sixth fastest.

Lewis Hamilton was tenth, a full second down on the pace-setter.

Ferrari showed good pace in FP2 with Raikkonen third and Vettel fourth. The German was a quarter of a second off the pace.

The day belonged to Max Verstappen as he claimed back-to-back P1s and Red Bull’s first Friday double for 2017. However, his practice ended in the Turn 1 barriers as he was pitched into a spin and into the barrier.