Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Interlagos, 2018

Hamilton quickest as problem halts Ricciardo in final practice

2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix third practice

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Lewis Hamilton put Mercedes on top ahead of the two Ferrari drivers in the final practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

On a hot track – over 40C when the session began – Hamilton used a set of hyper-soft tyres to set the quickest time of the weekend so far, six-hundredths inside the benchmark his team mate set yesterday.

Valtteri Bottas could only manage fifth-fastest in the session, three-quarters of a second off his team mate. The Ferrari pair were the closest threat to Hamilton, led by Kimi Raikkonen, though he will make a trip to the stewards to explain why he crossed the white line approaching the Safety Car line.

Max Verstappen was fourth-quickest but complained he was unable to fully charge his battery problem. At least his Red Bull kept running to the end of the session: Daniel Ricciardo, in his final weekend for the team, had the depressingly familiar experience of coming to a stop with a technical problem, four minutes before the end of the session.

Romain Grosjean led the midfielders but had an incident with Pierre Gasly in the final minutes of practice. The Haas driver appeared to hold up his Toro Rosso rival, who then drove close enough to the VF-18 that the pair made contact.

The Renault pair were next and Esteban Ocon completed the top 10 despite spending much of the session stuck in the pits with an engine problem.

Charles Leclerc ended the session 10th fastest for Sauber despite damaging his rear wing by spinning into the barrier at turn 19 early in the running.

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Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’37.17617
27Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’37.4640.28818
35Sebastian VettelFerrari1’37.5870.41115
433Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’37.7470.57115
577Valtteri BottasMercedes1’37.9330.75716
63Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’38.0900.91411
78Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’38.3041.12813
827Nico HulkenbergRenault1’38.8501.67415
955Carlos Sainz JnrRenault1’38.9701.79416
1031Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’39.0111.8357
1111Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’39.0531.87715
1228Brendon HartleyToro Rosso-Honda1’39.0741.89818
1316Charles LeclercSauber-Ferrari1’39.2822.10610
1420Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’39.6122.43613
1510Pierre GaslyToro Rosso-Honda1’39.7402.56412
1614Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Renault1’39.9742.79813
179Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’39.9972.82120
1818Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’40.1172.94118
192Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Renault1’40.2333.05714
2035Sergey SirotkinWilliams-Mercedes1’41.1824.00622

Third practice visual gaps

Lewis Hamilton – 1’37.176

+0.288 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’37.464

+0.411 Sebastian Vettel – 1’37.587

+0.571 Max Verstappen – 1’37.747

+0.757 Valtteri Bottas – 1’37.933

+0.914 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’38.090

+1.128 Romain Grosjean – 1’38.304

+1.674 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’38.850

+1.794 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’38.970

+1.835 Esteban Ocon – 1’39.011

+1.877 Sergio Perez – 1’39.053

+1.898 Brendon Hartley – 1’39.074

+2.106 Charles Leclerc – 1’39.282

+2.436 Kevin Magnussen – 1’39.612

+2.564 Pierre Gasly – 1’39.740

+2.798 Fernando Alonso – 1’39.974

+2.821 Marcus Ericsson – 1’39.997

+2.941 Lance Stroll – 1’40.117

+3.057 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’40.233

+4.006 Sergey Sirotkin – 1’41.182

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

Combined practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’39.5431’37.4431’37.176-0.26778
2Valtteri BottasMercedes1’39.4521’37.2361’37.933+0.69782
3Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’38.4911’37.2801’37.747+0.46774
4Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’38.9451’37.4281’38.090+0.66261
5Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’40.4171’37.4611’37.464+0.00382
6Sebastian VettelFerrari1’40.4531’37.5691’37.587+0.01875
7Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’40.6631’38.0601’38.304+0.24467
8Nico HulkenbergRenault1’41.0231’38.2301’38.850+0.6275
9Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’40.2351’38.3181’39.612+1.29464
10Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’40.1021’38.4021’39.011+0.60966
11Pierre GaslyToro Rosso-Honda1’40.6711’38.5061’39.740+1.23461
12Carlos Sainz JnrRenault1’40.5881’38.5111’38.970+0.45974
13Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Renault1’42.3131’38.7251’39.974+1.24964
14Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’41.0751’38.8061’39.053+0.24769
15Charles LeclercSauber-Ferrari1’38.8311’39.282+0.45143
16Brendon HartleyToro Rosso-Honda1’41.1371’38.9571’39.074+0.11779
17Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’41.9281’39.5021’39.997+0.49578
18Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Renault1’42.1141’39.9381’40.233+0.29554
19Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’41.4931’40.0461’40.117+0.07173
20Sergey SirotkinWilliams-Mercedes1’40.9351’41.182+0.24761
21Antonio GiovinazziSauber-Ferrari1’41.66224
22Robert KubicaWilliams-Mercedes1’42.99226

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2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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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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4 comments on “Hamilton quickest as problem halts Ricciardo in final practice”

  1. Hopefully, that means that Ricciardo wouldn’t have to face any reliability issues in the race although I’m not holding too much hope given his recent luck.

    1. I am going to lend Ricky Bobby my 2004 VY Commodore for Quali- it wont be fast be at least it will finish!!
      RBR racing seriously need to keep Dr Helmut Crazy off the tools, doesn’t seem to be working :(

      1. He’d surely do better in a green Torana?

  2. Romain is king of practice

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