Hamilton makes it three out of three in Shanghai

2015 Chinese Grand Prix third practice

Posted on

| Written by

Lewis Hamilton completed a clean sweep of practice sessions in China, leading a Mercedes one-two in the final hour of running before qualifying.

Under sunny skies in Shanghai a best lap of 1’37.615 for Hamilton put him two-tenths of a second clear of team mate Nico Rosberg.

The Ferraris were next-quickest, Sebastian Vettel coming within seven-tenths of a second of Hamilton despite reporting he lost time behind Pastor Maldonado’s Lotus. He also felt his tyres began to fade in the warmer than expected conditions.

The two Red Bulls were next, albeit a further seven-tenths slower than the Ferraris. More worryingly for them Daniil Kvyat reported another brake problem at the end of the session.

They were at least quicker than both Toro Rossos, which ended the session inside the top ten. Romain Grosjean also made it into the top ten followed by a tightly-knit group of drivers.

McLaren’s preparations suffered an immediate setback as Fernando Alonso’s car stopped just four corners into his installation lap. Alonso suspected a problem with his engine, which could jeopardise his participation in qualifying. Shortly afterwards team mate Jenson Button was advised “the issue is not fixed yet” and was summoned back to the pits, but he was soon able to rejoin the track to continue his programme.

In sunny conditions the track temperature rose above 47C and some drivers began to suffered heat-related problems. Among them was Hamilton, who reported his seat was overheating. Felipe Massa also pitted when smoke appeared in the cockpit of his Williams, a problem he also experienced yesterday.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’37.61514
26Nico RosbergMercedes1’37.8410.22616
35Sebastian VettelFerrari1’38.3130.69817
47Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’38.5120.89716
53Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’39.0201.4058
626Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault1’39.1061.49114
755Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’39.1131.49817
877Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’39.2431.62815
933Max VerstappenToro Rosso-Renault1’39.2741.65919
108Romain GrosjeanLotus-Mercedes1’39.4051.79014
1119Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’39.4101.79517
1227Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’39.5131.89814
139Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’39.5591.94418
1412Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1’39.5911.97619
1522Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’39.6942.07916
1613Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Mercedes1’39.7662.15116
1711Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’39.7812.16617
1828Will StevensManor-Ferrari1’42.9285.31315
1998Roberto MerhiManor-Ferrari1’44.9567.3419
2014Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1

Combined practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’39.0331’37.2191’37.615+0.39667
2Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’40.6611’37.6621’38.512+0.8578
3Nico RosbergMercedes1’39.5741’38.3991’37.841-0.55872
4Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’41.0291’38.3111’39.020+0.70953
5Sebastian VettelFerrari1’40.1571’38.3391’38.313-0.02665
6Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault1’41.0971’38.7371’39.106+0.36948
7Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’41.3031’38.8501’39.243+0.39365
8Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1’41.0121’39.0321’39.591+0.55963
9Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’41.1121’39.9711’39.113-0.85868
10Romain GrosjeanLotus-Mercedes1’39.1421’39.405+0.26346
11Max VerstappenToro Rosso-Renault1’41.5751’39.8941’39.274-0.6279
12Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’41.8451’39.2751’39.694+0.41964
13Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’41.3041’40.4231’39.410-1.01341
14Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Mercedes1’41.3351’39.4441’39.766+0.32269
15Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’42.1841’40.1511’39.513-0.63861
16Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’41.9181’39.7511’39.559-0.19275
17Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1’42.1611’39.74348
18Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’42.1411’40.8681’39.781-1.08763
19Jolyon PalmerLotus-Mercedes1’41.96725
20Will StevensManor-Ferrari1’45.3791’44.5641’42.928-1.63641
21Roberto MerhiManor-Ferrari1’46.4431’42.9731’44.956+1.98356

Author information

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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

6 comments on “Hamilton makes it three out of three in Shanghai”

  1. The whole field, apart Manor, covered by 2.1 seconds. Very interesting.

    1. … but no time from Alonso.

    2. Simon (@weeniebeenie)
      11th April 2015, 6:54

      Speaking of Manor when was the last time in F1 we had just one lone team so far off the next worst team that wasn’t just a one off? Minardi

  2. What is most interesting is the tyre strategy used by Mercedes and Ferrari:

    HAM M-S-S
    ROS M-S-S-S
    VET M-M-M-M-S
    RAI M-M-M-M-S

    You can already see Ferrari are looking to keep as many fresh softs as they can for the race while Mercedes will run a short stint on softs and then switch to the mediums for the rest of the race. Makes for a tasty race tomorrow.

  3. Simon (@weeniebeenie)
    11th April 2015, 6:29

    Red Bull still really struggling with those brakes. If I were either driver I wouldn’t be feeling particularly confident about doing the full race with that issue looming over them.

  4. According to DC, these are the four drivers who have 5 or more pole positions on one circuit:

    Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher, Juan Manuel Fangio, Lewis Hamilton

    Pretty exclusive group for Lewis to be a part of.

Comments are closed.