Azerbaijan Grand Prix: Daniel Ricciardo top as Ferrari & Mercedes struggle

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Final practice and qualifying are live on 5 live sports extra and the BBC Sport website on SaturdayRed Bull's Daniel Ricciardo edged Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen in second practice at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Ricciardo, superb winner of the last race in China, was just 0.069 seconds clear of Raikkonen as championship leader Sebastian Vettel struggled.Vettel was 11th, 1.3secs off the pace, and struggling for grip as he suffered lock-ups and off-track moments.
Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton were fourth and fifth, behind the second Red Bull of Max Verstappen.Bottas was 0.775secs off the pace as Mercedes, like Vettel, appeared to be suffering on the tricky Baku street track and its low-grip, low-abrasion surface.

Ricciardo is aiming for back-to-back wins at Baku
Who is better - Verstappen or Ricciardo[/IMG]Perhaps this is a three-way title fight
Red Bull looked very strong in all conditions, with Verstappen apparently quickest from Hamilton on the race-simulation runs towards the end of the session, when the teams run with high fuel to get an idea of form for the start of the grand prix.Red Bull's big concern will be that, on usual form, they are likely to fall back in the fight for grid positions in qualifying on Saturday as they lack the extra power-boost modes enjoyed by Mercedes and Ferrari.Verstappen, who has been criticised for a series of incidents in all three races so far this season, crashed early in the first session but recovered well to be only 0.116secs slower than Ricciardo overall and be fastest on the longer runs.And, continuing a pattern that has emerged throughout the first three races, Raikkonen appeared to be the fastest Ferrari driver, at least on Friday.
[img]data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAIAAAAAAAP///yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7" data-src="{width}{hidpi}/cpsprodpb/162E9/production/_101075809_max_tweet_2.png" data-sizes="auto" alt="Max Verstappen crashes">
Verstappen hit the wall during first practice
Midfield teams benefit
McLaren's Fernando Alonso was sixth quickest, only 0.9secs off the pace, an encouraging performance for the team which on Thursday removed chief technical officer Tim Goss from his position in the first act of a major technical reorganisation following a disappointing start to the season.McLaren have been struggling with a lack of straight-line speed this season as focus has switched to the quality of their chassis after there years of blaming their former Honda engines for their lack of performance.But, after saying on Thursday that the team would experiment with a lower-drag set-up, Alonso was in reasonably good shape on the straights - 10km/h slower than Ricciardo, who was up among the fastest, but 3km/h quicker than Verstappen.Force India's Esteban Ocon was seventh fastest, ahead of the Renault of Carlos Sainz, Kevin Magnussen's Haas and the second Renault of Nico Hulkenberg.Williams, after their best showing of the season in first practice in eighth and 11th places, fell back to their usual positions, with Lance Stroll, who finished third in Baku last year, 14th and Sergey Sirotkin 17th.
Who will win in Baku[/img]
Choose your top three drivers from the list below
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Bullseye: Is there an Azerbaijan darts league Haas' Kevin Magnussen could join[/img]


Somebody paint a flake in the ice cream for Kimi

Tight and twisty, old and new, Azerbaijan has it all

Can Charles Leclerc really contort his legs into that position?
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