Ricciardo climbs the timing sheets in Germany

Ricciardo in free practice in Germany 498745175

Ricciardo in free practice in Germany 498745175

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Daniel Ricciardo was the ‘best of the rest’ at the German Grand Prix, setting the third fastest time in the second free practice session.

The Australian finished behind the dominant Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg, with a fastest time of 1:18.443 - a tenth slower than Hamilton’s fastest time.

Ricciardo completed 35 laps during the session.

“I think tyres and weather will define the race on Sunday,” said Ricciardo afterwards. “Today we were happy with our progress and it seems to be one of the closer gaps for a while, but it’s tomorrow when we’ll see how close we really are.

“I think we had a good car today and we extracted pretty much everything we could out of the practice today. Hopefully we can have more of a fight with the leaders this weekend.”

Meanwhile, home-crowd favourite Sebastian Vettel improved on his time from FP1, with a 1:19.248, which was good enough for eighth place. He too completed 35 laps.

Vettel said: “I think we can improve from there for tomorrow. I don’t think not having the FRIC suspension on the car made too much difference to us today, although I haven’t had a proper look at the other cars yet.

“I think it will be fairly close between the cars this weekend. It’s nice to be on track here near to where I grew up and I’m looking forward to the rest of the weekend.”