After a relaxing summer break the Formula 1 teams are back into action mode in Belgium at the renowned Spa Francorchamps circuit.
Before the cars hit the track for the first time since the relaxing free period, am exciting announcement was made by the Red Bull team.
Sergio Perez has re-signed with the Red Bull racing team for 2022 after his warm welcome in early 2021.
The signing means that any rumors of Anglo-Thai driver Alex Albon being promoted back up into the second seat after his demotion to reserve driver at the beginning of the year.
Additionally, the fight for the second Mercedes seat between Valtteri Bottas and George Russell was once again kept a secret even though both drivers revealed talks had taken place.
The Formula 1 cars and their pilots were finally back on a racetrack after 3 weeks break.
A cloud of fog floated around the track for the start of FP1, making for a damp start to the first practice.
Drivers indicated that even though it was damp it did not suffice enough for the use of intermediate tyres. Although, a small amount of rain did fall near the end of the session.
All teams are expecting rain this weekend with the forecast showing wet conditions for qualifying and the GP on Sunday.
Rough edges were common place after the drivers holidays. One example was Kimi Raikkonen sliding as he entered the pitlane, scrubbing his front wing causing minimal damage.
Others, including Hamilton and Leclerc also had their moments with Leclerc getting very lucky not to have visited the gravel trap after sliding outside the runoff. Hamilton failed to complete a flying lap and finished 18th fastest after he was held up by Williams driver Latifi.
With Hamilton in the bottom 3 that meant the top spot was free for the taking, and was snatched by his teammate Bottas who lapped one-and-a-half tenths faster than the Red Bull of Max Verstappen
In FP2 the roles were reversed with Verstappen taking the top spot but then sliding off and shunting the barriers late in the session causing a red flag and ending the session early.
Max was not the only one to show some rusty driving with Charles Leclerc also hitting the barriers after losing his rear, consequently destroying his front left wheel.
Ocon came closer to joining the two young drivers in the barriers but managed to keep it together. The latest race winner spun out of turn 14 but came away damage free and continued the session to finish 7th.
Overall it seems like Spa could bring some exciting racing with the high chance of rain and the visible shakiness from some drivers post summer vacation.
Here are how the drivers finished in both sessions:
Featured image source: Instagram.com/f1