Bottas quickest in damp final practice session

2014 Belgian Grand Prix third practice

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Valtteri Bottas headed the time sheets as practice came to an end at Spa-Francorchaps.

Damp conditions greeted the drivers on the second day of the Belgian Grand Prix and most used intermediate tyres to perform their installation laps at the start of the session.

Few drivers did any serious running while the track was at its wettest, but with no further rain falling the track had dried considerably at the halfway point in the one-hour session.

Esteban Gutierrez was the first to tackle the circuit on slick rubber. Soon afterwards the rest of the field joined him on the track to resume their truncated programmes on the medium tyres.

The Mercedes drivers inevitably made their way to the top of the times – Lewis Hamilton taking the quickest time off his team mate by a mere thousandth of a second at one stage, having lost over three-tenths of a second in the final sector.

However when the drivers switched to soft tyres for their qualifying simulation runs at the end of the session both Mercedes drivers found themselves knocked off the top spot.

Kimi Raik konen, running with noticeably more rear downforce on his Ferrari than team mate Fernando Alonso, set the initial pace with a 1’49.817. Hamilton then matched that time to within a thousandth of a second.

That identical time was beaten by three drivers before the end of the session. Nico Rosberg was among those, but the quickest Mercedes driver was only third-fastest when the chequered flag fell.

By the time the track was at its driest the best effort by Bottas was just three-tenths of a second shy of yesterday’s quickest lap. Daniel Ricciardo joined him at the top of the times, beating Rosberg by six-thousandths of a second.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
177Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’49.46512
23Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’49.7330.2689
36Nico RosbergMercedes1’49.7390.27413
47Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’49.8170.3529
544Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’49.8170.35213
614Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’49.8900.4259
726Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’49.8930.42811
822Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’50.2030.73811
919Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’50.4230.95811
1025Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Renault1’50.5351.07010
1111Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’50.5921.12712
1220Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes1’50.7481.28311
131Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’50.8141.34910
1427Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’50.8661.40111
1599Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari1’50.9621.49712
168Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1’51.5092.0449
1713Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Renault1’51.6102.14510
1821Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari1’51.8982.43315
1917Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari1’52.4572.99214
204Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari1’52.9843.51914
219Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault1’54.2944.82911
2245Andre LottererCaterham-Renault1’55.0085.54313

Combined practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’51.6741’49.1891’49.817+0.62863
2Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’53.1721’50.6771’49.465-1.21258
3Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’52.9721’50.9771’49.733-1.24444
4Nico RosbergMercedes1’51.5771’49.7931’49.739-0.05466
5Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’52.8181’52.2341’49.817-2.41744
6Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’51.8051’49.9301’49.890-0.0444
7Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’53.5941’50.7251’49.893-0.83257
8Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’52.4041’50.6591’50.203-0.45663
9Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’53.9681’50.3271’50.423+0.09655
10Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Renault1’54.1891’51.3831’50.535-0.84856
11Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’52.9031’51.5731’50.592-0.98164
12Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes1’52.9221’51.0741’50.748-0.32665
13Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’53.3691’50.814-2.55521
14Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’52.9371’51.0771’50.866-0.21159
15Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari1’53.7031’51.4501’50.962-0.48855
16Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1’53.5971’52.1961’51.509-0.68754
17Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Renault1’55.3361’51.610-3.72633
18Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari1’53.9551’51.898-2.05722
19Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari1’55.7821’52.7761’52.457-0.31956
20Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari1’54.0401’52.984-1.05632
21Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault1’57.9771’54.0501’54.294+0.24465
22Andre LottererCaterham-Renault1’57.8861’54.0931’55.008+0.91561
23Giedo van der GardeSauber-Ferrari1’54.33516
24Alexander RossiMarussia-Ferrari1’57.23220

Image © Williams/LAT

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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7 comments on “Bottas quickest in damp final practice session”

  1. Kimi’s back! That lap was mighty. Same for Bottas. Hope Finns will be flying in quali too.

    1. I think people are looking way, way too much in to this session (also judging by the comments in the live topic).

      It’s just practice, guys.

      It was greasy surface, and the front-runners weren’t fully committed to the session. They firmly have their eyes set on qualifying, which chances are, will be bone dry.

  2. Nothing special in this session so it seems. It looks like Ferrari are ready for Monza though with Alonso his rear and front wing setup.

  3. LOL At Hamilton’s middle sector at the end of the session. 48.6.. :P I was seriously laughing when I saw it..

  4. Gideon Hadi (@)
    23rd August 2014, 11:36

    i don’t think its really representative of the pace, because it was damp majority and drivers start to put some fast laps about 5 minutes before FP3 was over

  5. The Mercedes drivers inevitably made their way to the top of the times – Lewis Hamilton taking the quickest time off his team mate by a mere thousandth of a second at one stage, having lost over three-tenths of a second in the final sector.

    @keithcollantine Wasn’t it three-hundredths of a second? If I recall correctly he was -0.028 after the first two sectors and -0.001 at the end of the lap. nitpicking, I know ;-)

    1. @gdewilde: The difference between 0.03 and 0.3 is not “nitpicking” – at least in Formula 1. :P

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