Verstappen leads Red Bull one-two, top Mercedes sixth in final practice

2020 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix third practice

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Max Verstappen headed the final practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the second time this weekend he has topped a session.

Following almost a quarter of an hour with no cars running on track, the Red Bull driver set a best time of 1’36.251, the quickest of the weekend so far by two hundredths of a second.

However with the final, hour-long session run in blazing sunshine, and track temperatures above 35C for much of the time, the track conditions will change significantly before qualifying begins in just under two hours’. Mercedes are therefore unlikely to be concerned that their fastest car was only sixth, or that neither of their drivers improved their times compared to yesterday.

Alexander Albon, who complained of serious understeer on his car, completed a one-two for Red Bull but was half a second slower than his team mate. The two Renaults were next, Daniel Ricciardo leading Esteban Ocon, the pair separated by just two-hundredths of a second.

Lando Norris slipped into fifth place, dropping Lewis Hamilton out of the top five on the Mercedes driver’s second day since his return to the cockpit. Carlos Sainz Jnr also got among the Mercedes-powered cars in the second half of the top 10, which included Hamilton’s team mate Valtteri Bottas and both Racing Points.

Ahead of qualifying, George Russell indicated Williams have the potential to reach Q2 again, setting the 15th-quickest time, fractionally ahead of Antonio Giovinazzi in the quickest Alfa Romeo. Russell had almost nine tenths of a second in hand over team mate Nicholas Latifi.

Pietro Fittipaldi, who propped up the times table, had a similar gap to team mate Kevin Magnussen.

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2020 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix third practice result

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
133Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’36.25116
223Alexander AlbonRed Bull-Honda1’36.7520.50115
33Daniel RicciardoRenault1’36.8770.62612
431Esteban OconRenault1’36.8990.64815
54Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’36.9940.74313
644Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’37.0120.76116
718Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’37.0300.77916
855Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’37.0680.81712
977Valtteri BottasMercedes1’37.0850.83416
1011Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’37.2270.97613
1126Daniil KvyatAlphaTauri-Honda1’37.2661.01517
1216Charles LeclercFerrari1’37.2701.01914
1310Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Honda1’37.3711.12018
145Sebastian VettelFerrari1’37.7281.47716
1563George RussellWilliams-Mercedes1’37.8861.63516
1699Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’37.9001.64916
177Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’38.2692.01816
1820Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’38.4572.20614
196Nicholas LatifiWilliams-Mercedes1’38.7652.51417
2051Pietro FittipaldiHaas-Ferrari1’39.1592.90815

Third practice visual gaps

Max Verstappen – 1’36.251

+0.501 Alexander Albon – 1’36.752

+0.626 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’36.877

+0.648 Esteban Ocon – 1’36.899

+0.743 Lando Norris – 1’36.994

+0.761 Lewis Hamilton – 1’37.012

+0.779 Lance Stroll – 1’37.030

+0.817 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’37.068

+0.834 Valtteri Bottas – 1’37.085

+0.976 Sergio Perez – 1’37.227

+1.015 Daniil Kvyat – 1’37.266

+1.019 Charles Leclerc – 1’37.270

+1.120 Pierre Gasly – 1’37.371

+1.477 Sebastian Vettel – 1’37.728

+1.635 George Russell – 1’37.886

+1.649 Antonio Giovinazzi – 1’37.900

+2.018 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’38.269

+2.206 Kevin Magnussen – 1’38.457

+2.514 Nicholas Latifi – 1’38.765

+2.908 Pietro Fittipaldi – 1’39.159

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda1’37.3781’37.0461’36.251-0.79572
2Valtteri BottasMercedes1’37.4121’36.2761’37.085+0.80976
3Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’38.7441’36.4791’37.012+0.53370
4Alexander AlbonRed Bull-Honda1’38.5471’37.2631’36.752-0.51173
5Daniel RicciardoRenault1’37.5081’36.877-0.63144
6Esteban OconRenault1’38.5151’37.5051’36.899-0.60679
7Lando NorrisMcLaren-Renault1’39.3521’37.4381’36.994-0.44470
8Lance StrollRacing Point-Mercedes1’38.8311’37.5601’37.030-0.5370
9Carlos Sainz JnrMcLaren-Renault1’39.3301’37.6161’37.068-0.54870
10Sergio PerezRacing Point-Mercedes1’38.9561’37.5061’37.227-0.27973
11Daniil KvyatAlphaTauri-Honda1’39.1501’37.5961’37.266-0.3376
12Charles LeclercFerrari1’39.3441’37.5081’37.270-0.23870
13Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Honda1’39.1601’37.9001’37.371-0.52980
14Sebastian VettelFerrari1’39.6701’38.1981’37.728-0.4767
15George RussellWilliams-Mercedes1’40.4461’38.8171’37.886-0.93164
16Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’38.5641’37.900-0.66447
17Kimi RaikkonenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari1’39.1991’38.0681’38.269+0.20166
18Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’38.5041’38.457-0.04749
19Nicholas LatifiWilliams-Mercedes1’41.0631’39.1321’38.765-0.36775
20Pietro FittipaldiHaas-Ferrari1’44.0691’39.0271’39.159+0.13264

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2020 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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8 comments on “Verstappen leads Red Bull one-two, top Mercedes sixth in final practice”

    1. saving their engines.

      1. Why would they bother at this point in the season? More like no point running at full throttle in completely unrepresentative conditions.

    2. Also, P3 is not representative of Qualifying conditions. P2 is more accurate, and they did alright then!

    3. And big ones too….

  1. Hopefully this is Albon’s last weekend in a formula one car.

  2. The race is on Sunday lets not draw any conclusions till then.

    1. Have to for my prediction but otherwise, yes indeed,no indication Mercedes were unsettled.

Comments are closed.