British Grand Prix 2014: Lewis Hamilton fastest in second practice but sees his Mercedes suffer more problems

Briton's car ground to a halt with 30 minutes remaining

Lewis Hamilton may have finished top of the timesheet in practice for Sunday's British Grand Prix but the home hero was left to ponder the latest failure to his Mercedes.

Read more: Susie Wolff makes history but stalled rather disappointingly

Two retirements this season - in the opening race in Australia and again in Canada last month - have cost Hamilton dear in his clash for the Formula One world title with team-mate Nico Rosberg.

The 29-year-old heads into his home race 29 points adrift of Rosberg and in dire need of a result to quell the German's forward momentum after a run of three grands prix in which he has heavily outscored the Briton.

But at a time when Hamilton was beginning to flex his muscles around Silverstone by posting the fastest lap on the quicker of Pirelli's two tyre compounds for this weekend - the medium - his car ground to a halt with 30 of the 90 minutes remaining.

The collective groan from the majority of the 70,000-strong crowd at the Northamptonshire venue was a deep one as Hamilton clambered out of the cockpit of a car that had stopped between turns three and four - The Loop and Aintree respectively.

It was proof again Mercedes are far from bulletproof in a season they have so far dominated, although Hamilton must be wondering 'why me?' as Rosberg has avoided such issues.

The 29-year-old has so far finished in the top two in all eight races to eke out his margin over Hamilton, although he did suffer the same loss of ERS (energy recovery system) in Montreal.

However, whereas Rosberg managed to nurse his car to the runner-up spot, Hamilton's failure resulted in a loss of the rear brakes, and with it retirement.

Hamilton will obviously now be hoping he has no more issues over the remaining two days if he is to eat into Rosberg's advantage.

At least there will be some satisfaction in finishing 0.228 seconds ahead of Rosberg at the end of the two Friday sessions, with his best lap a one minute 34.508secs.

Again, as in FP1, only Fernando Alonso finished within a second of the dominant Mercedes duo, with the Ferrari star 0.736secs adrift of Hamilton.

Red Bull pairing Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel were fourth and fifth quickest respectively, just over a second off the pace, with Williams' Valtteri Bottas 1.5secs down in sixth.

Bottas, however, concluded a troubled day for Williams with a bizarre bang underneath the engine cover that exploded through the bodywork when the Finn was out on track five minutes from the end.

Bottas had returned to his car following a first session for Susie Wolff that unfortunately ended after just 20 minutes with an engine failure due to an oil pressure problem inside the Mercedes power unit.

As the first woman in 22 years to take part in an F1 weekend, and only the sixth overall, Wolff's day in the spotlight resulted in the Scot managing one timed lap before pulling off track.

As for team-mate Felipe Massa, the Brazilian spun off at Stowe and crashed heavily into a barrier, only for his team to perform wonders by getting him back on track for FP2, at the end of which he finished 11th, just over two seconds back.

McLaren's Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen were seventh and eight best respectively, both 1.7secs down, with Marussia's Max Chilton in 21st and 4.7secs in arrears.

PA

News
Sir David Attenborough
people
Life and Style
Young girl and bowl of cereal
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel: