Hamilton to the fore in final practice

2015 Belgian Grand Prix third practice

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Lewis Hamilton led the way in the final practice session at Spa-Francorchamps, ending the hour almost half a second faster than team mate Nico Rosberg.

The Mercedes drivers headed the times at the end of an uneventful session, with their closest rivals Ferrari some six-tenths of a second adrift.

The two Red Bull drivers were separated by five five-hundredths of a second and, unlike most of their rivals, completed their qualifying simulation on the soft tyres much earlier in the session. Ricciardo’s best effort left him almost a second down on Hamilton.

Force India were the highest Mercedes customer team, Sergio Perez a strong fifth and Nico Hulkenberg eighth. The Williams pair completed the top ten.

Lotus left it until the final seconds to set their flying runs, and Romain Grosjean found himself delayed in traffic. He caught Raikkonen at the exit of the Curve Paul Frere and almost lost control of his car as he dodged around the Ferrari.

“Raikkonen is dangerous,” a furious Grosjean complained on the radio afterwards, “it’s very dangerous what he did to me – very, very dangerous”.

Grosjean ended the session 16th ahead of Jenson Button’s McLaren – Fernando Alonso failed to a set a time due to an exhaust problem – and the two Manors.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’48.98415
26Nico RosbergMercedes1’49.4820.49819
35Sebastian VettelFerrari1’49.6290.64517
47Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’49.8640.88019
511Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’49.8660.88215
63Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’49.9300.94620
726Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault1’49.9800.99619
827Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’50.0001.01615
977Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’50.1791.19515
1019Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’50.4471.46315
1155Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’50.5521.56820
1213Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Mercedes1’50.5851.60117
1333Max VerstappenToro Rosso-Renault1’50.5991.61521
1412Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1’50.6901.70617
159Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’51.0542.07020
168Romain GrosjeanLotus-Mercedes1’51.1872.20318
1722Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’51.9812.99712
1828Will StevensManor-Ferrari1’54.2625.27816
1998Roberto MerhiManor-Ferrari1’54.2815.2979

Third practice visual gaps

Lewis Hamilton – 1’48.984

+0.498 Nico Rosberg – 1’49.482

+0.645 Sebastian Vettel – 1’49.629

+0.880 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’49.864

+0.882 Sergio Perez – 1’49.866

+0.946 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’49.930

+0.996 Daniil Kvyat – 1’49.980

+1.016 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’50.000

+1.195 Valtteri Bottas – 1’50.179

+1.463 Felipe Massa – 1’50.447

+1.568 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’50.552

+1.601 Pastor Maldonado – 1’50.585

+1.615 Max Verstappen – 1’50.599

+1.706 Felipe Nasr – 1’50.690

+2.070 Marcus Ericsson – 1’51.054

+2.203 Romain Grosjean – 1’51.187

+2.997 Jenson Button – 1’51.981

+5.278 Will Stevens – 1’54.262

+5.297 Roberto Merhi – 1’54.281

Complete practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’51.3241’49.6871’48.984-0.70362
2Nico RosbergMercedes1’51.0821’49.3851’49.482+0.09757
3Sebastian VettelFerrari1’51.8661’50.9401’49.629-1.31161
4Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’51.4781’50.4611’49.864-0.59765
5Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’52.4231’50.9711’49.866-1.10556
6Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’51.3731’50.1361’49.930-0.20653
7Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault1’51.9601’50.3991’49.980-0.41955
8Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’52.6141’50.4611’50.000-0.46156
9Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’52.5111’51.2501’50.179-1.07159
10Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’52.6531’51.5881’50.447-1.14163
11Romain GrosjeanLotus-Mercedes1’50.4891’51.187+0.69839
12Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’52.4211’51.0371’50.552-0.48570
13Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Mercedes1’52.5391’51.3171’50.585-0.73248
14Max VerstappenToro Rosso-Renault1’52.1581’51.1171’50.599-0.51873
15Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1’52.6401’50.9281’50.690-0.23857
16Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’53.4261’50.7091’51.054+0.34554
17Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda1’54.2251’51.8541’51.981+0.12742
18Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1’53.5021’52.57030
19Jolyon PalmerLotus-Mercedes1’53.79923
20Will StevensManor-Ferrari1’55.5011’54.0651’54.262+0.19749
21Roberto MerhiManor-Ferrari1’56.0861’54.2531’54.281+0.02840

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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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13 comments on “Hamilton to the fore in final practice”

  1. I missed the third practice… why alonso didn’t compete ? And why button was so slow ? Did he has any problems ?

    1. Yes, the problem is honda

    2. The answer for all your three questions: Honda.

    3. It says right in the article…

  2. As quick as the Ferraris …

    1. Thats what she said.

    2. In the Manor

  3. Interesting to note very modest gains so far this year. Hamilton’s best is just 0.2s up on the quickest from practice last year. Qualifying was wet.

    1. Which practice ?

    2. Hotter track surface doesn’t do good to the lap times.

  4. The “visual gaps” graph explains why Bernie views Manor as superfluous to the show and not worth the allocation from the revenue fund.

  5. Redbull seems to be the 3rd fastest car now. Somewhat, they have surpassed the Williams.

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