Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Bahrain International Circuit, 2019

Leclerc keeps Ferrari on top in final practice

2019 Bahrain Grand Prix third practice

Posted on

| Written by

Charles Leclerc ensured Ferrari led all three practice sessions for the Bahrain Grand Prix by heading the final hour of running before qualifying.

Leclerc led team mate Sebastian Vettel by just over a tenth of a second after a tidy lap on soft tyres produced a time of 1’29.569. However this was over seven-tenths of a second off the best time seen yesterday, likely due to the hotter conditions final practice is held in.

While the Ferrari drivers did their flying runs earlier in the session, the Mercedes drivers waited until the final minutes before setting their best times. Lewis Hamilton took third with a 1’30.334, over three-quarters of a second slower than Leclerc, while Bottas was fourth after running wide.

Red Bull continued to lag behind the pace on the soft compound tyres. Max Verstappen’s last effort was only good enough for the eighth-fastest time. However in a tight midfield he was just 0.151 seconds off fifth place, held by Romain Grosjean’s Haas. Nico Hulkenberg and Lando Norris also out-paced the Red Bull driver.

Carlos Sainz Jnr gave encouragement to McLaren by joining his team mate in the top 10, and also to Renault as three of their cars appeared in the top half of the field. Daniil Kvyat completed the top 10 for Toro Rosso.

The first of the Alfa Romeos was Kimi Raikkonen in 11th place, followed closely by Pierre Gasly’s Red Bull and Kevin Magnussen in the other Haas. The Racing Point pair were next, Lance Stroll ahead of Sergio Perez.

Daniel Ricciardo had another difficult session in his Renault, ending up 16th. The Williams pair look set for another tough qualifying session as George Russell ended up 1.2 seconds shy of the rest of the field following a DRS glitch at the start of the session.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
116Charles LeclercFerrari1’29.56915
25Sebastian VettelFerrari1’29.7380.16916
344Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’30.3340.76510
477Valtteri BottasMercedes1’30.3890.82012
58Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’30.8181.24914
627Nico HulkenbergRenault1’30.9101.34112
74Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’30.9551.38615
833Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’30.9591.39010
955Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’30.9651.39614
1026Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Honda1’31.1731.60417
117Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’31.3331.76421
1210Pierre GaslyRed Bull-Honda1’31.3921.82313
1320Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’31.5401.97113
1418Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’31.6182.04916
1511Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’31.6382.0699
163Daniel RicciardoRenault1’31.6432.07411
1723Alexander AlbonToro Rosso-Honda1’31.6792.11017
1899Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’32.1322.56321
1963George RussellWilliams-Mercedes1’33.3873.81814
2088Robert KubicaWilliams-Mercedes1’33.5253.95613

Third practice visual gaps

Charles Leclerc – 1’29.569

+0.169 Sebastian Vettel – 1’29.738

+0.765 Lewis Hamilton – 1’30.334

+0.820 Valtteri Bottas – 1’30.389

+1.249 Romain Grosjean – 1’30.818

+1.341 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’30.910

+1.386 Lando Norris – 1’30.955

+1.390 Max Verstappen – 1’30.959

+1.396 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’30.965

+1.604 Daniil Kvyat – 1’31.173

+1.764 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’31.333

+1.823 Pierre Gasly – 1’31.392

+1.971 Kevin Magnussen – 1’31.540

+2.049 Lance Stroll – 1’31.618

+2.069 Sergio Perez – 1’31.638

+2.074 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’31.643

+2.110 Alexander Albon – 1’31.679

+2.563 Antonio Giovinazzi – 1’32.132

+3.818 George Russell – 1’33.387

+3.956 Robert Kubica – 1’33.525

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Sebastian VettelFerrari1’30.6171’28.8461’29.738+0.89269
2Charles LeclercFerrari1’30.3541’28.8811’29.569+0.68867
3Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’31.6011’29.4491’30.334+0.88566
4Valtteri BottasMercedes1’31.3281’29.5571’30.389+0.83274
5Nico HulkenbergRenault1’32.0401’29.6691’30.910+1.24161
6Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’31.6731’29.7251’30.959+1.23465
7Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’32.6021’30.0001’31.540+1.5467
8Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’32.9451’30.0171’30.955+0.93869
9Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’32.9941’30.0681’30.818+0.7570
10Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Honda1’32.3391’30.0931’31.173+1.0877
11Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’31.9521’30.1921’30.965+0.77375
12Pierre GaslyRed Bull-Honda1’31.8151’30.4291’31.392+0.96361
13Alexander AlbonToro Rosso-Honda1’32.8741’30.4581’31.679+1.22177
14Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’32.8851’30.7161’31.638+0.92261
15Daniel RicciardoRenault1’32.4011’30.8481’31.643+0.79560
16Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’32.3851’31.0881’31.333+0.24550
17Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’33.5181’31.1291’31.618+0.48963
18Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’32.9491’31.1441’32.132+0.98853
19George RussellWilliams-Mercedes1’34.1881’31.9041’33.387+1.48372
20Robert KubicaWilliams-Mercedes1’34.2531’32.9321’33.525+0.59377

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2019 Bahrain Grand Prix

Browse all 2019 Bahrain Grand Prix articles

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.

13 comments on “Leclerc keeps Ferrari on top in final practice”

  1. Ricciardo & Magnussen are just too far away than their teammates.

    1. @ruliemaulana Too early to jump to definite conclusions solely based on practice sessions. Qualifying and the race are what matters after all.

      1. @jerejj Maybe not Magnussen, but Ricciardo was behind Hulk in all three sessions.

        1. I admit I’m surprised but obviously the Renault is a different beast than the RB and either DR or the setup needs to change, I’m reminded of MotoGP and the problems multi world champ Jorge Lorenzo had with Ducati, by the time he convinced them to adjust the bike to his style of riding (and winning) it was too late for the relationship.

    2. These things should only be judged after a few races, sometimes damage is found on a car days later that explains time difference, ie Hamilton and Kubica in Melbourne. Yesterday kubica was one second off Russell, and he felt there was something aerodynamically wrong, today in free practice 3 he got a new floor (bleet in Melbourne spec) , so not optimised for this race, and he was only .1 off Russell. The same could turn out with Ricciardos current struggles, in modern f1, there is very little between the drivers in ability. Look at Hamilton in fp3 only 0.1 faster than his teammate being paid 1/10 the salary.

      1. That and I’ve got lots of patience for drivers new to a team with a teammate who is engrained there, they with far more data on the engrained driver and that driver far more accustomed to the feel of the car in general, even with the reg changes to the wings. Let’s give DR some more races and I’m sure before long both drivers will be equally limited by the car.

  2. To anyone who might worry about the lap times now that the FP3 top time was slower than the fastest FP2 time yesterday: I wouldn’t worry about that at all. First of all, this isn’t the first time that the fastest FP3 time has been slower than the FP2 equivalent on any given race weekend, and secondly, the temperatures are quite a bit different between the afternoon and the evening in the Middle East, so not really representative anyway.

    1. We all know that, and to casual fans it was explained on the TV coverage.

      1. Ain’t no TV coverage for casual fans in Australia !

  3. The midfield is well mixed, shame aero turbulence is as ever, horrendous.
    As the times suggest fp3 is a lot slower, qualifying is going to be quite different.

  4. Good to see the new young guns up there!
    Bodes well for their future in F1.

  5. georgeboole (@)
    30th March 2019, 13:49

    I m just surprised how well McLaren seems to be doing. Even if they dont make it to Q3 but stay close to P11-12 it will be a huge leap forward.

  6. The pilesitter is this year’s champ. You heard it here first. This kid is something else

Comments are closed.