Azerbaijan GP – Sebastian Vettel In Front As Lewis Hamilton Closes The Gap

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The third free practice session prior to the Azerbaijan Grand Prix qualifying started with cold temperatures and with some raindrops on the track. Sebastian Vettel (Scuderia Ferrari) and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) recovered after a troubled Friday and led the timesheets in the last practice session of the weekend.

Sebastian Vettel In Front As Lewis Hamilton Closes The Gap

Ferrari showed speed throughout the entire session, with Vettel on top of the timecharts consistently. Kimi Raikkonen marked the third fastest time, behind Vettel and Hamilton.

Mercedes continued their struggles in the middle sector, but Hamilton managed to split the Ferraris. Valtteri Bottas recorded the fifth fastest time.

Max Verstappen positioned his Red Bull Racing car fourth, whilst his teammate Daniel Ricciardo was out of the top ten in 12th place.

Sergio Pérez showed speed and climbed up to fifth place in his Force India. The Mexican driver was eight tenths behind the leader. Esteban Ocon stayed in ninth place.

Williams: Two sides of the coin

With less than 10 minutes left, Williams was showing their best form of the year. Lance Stroll was eighth and his Russian teammate, Sergey Sirotkin, had the tenth best lap time.

But the Russian crashed into the wall, forcing a red flag and compromising his chances in qualifying.

The event resumed with three minutes on the clock, but there weren’t too many changes in the pecking order.

Every team used the ultrasoft tire, except for Renault. The French team’s drivers lined up in 16th (Carlos Sainz) and 17th place (Nico Hulkenberg).

FP3 Results:

1 5 Sebastian Vettel FERRARI 1:43.091 17
2 44 Lewis Hamilton MERCEDES 1:43.452 +0.361s 16
3 7 Kimi Räikkönen FERRARI 1:43.493 +0.402s 17
4 33 Max Verstappen RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER 1:43.519 +0.428s 17
5 77 Valtteri Bottas MERCEDES 1:43.569 +0.478s 20
6 11 Sergio Perez FORCE INDIA MERCEDES 1:43.936 +0.845s 9
7 20 Kevin Magnussen HAAS FERRARI 1:43.958 +0.867s 11
8 18 Lance Stroll WILLIAMS MERCEDES 1:44.123 +1.032s 8
9 31 Esteban Ocon FORCE INDIA MERCEDES 1:44.220 +1.129s 11
10 35 Sergey Sirotkin WILLIAMS MERCEDES 1:44.534 +1.443s 9
11 14 Fernando Alonso MCLAREN RENAULT 1:44.763 +1.672s 12
12 3 Daniel Ricciardo RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER 1:44.861 +1.770s 17
13 10 Pierre Gasly SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA 1:44.905 +1.814s 16
14 16 Charles Leclerc SAUBER FERRARI 1:45.218 +2.127s 15
15 8 Romain Grosjean HAAS FERRARI 1:45.261 +2.170s 12
16 55 Carlos Sainz RENAULT 1:45.432 +2.341s 15
17 27 Nico Hulkenberg RENAULT 1:45.456 +2.365s 11
18 2 Stoffel Vandoorne MCLAREN RENAULT 1:45.505 +2.414s 13
19 9 Marcus Ericsson SAUBER FERRARI 1:45.910 +2.819s 17
20 28 Brendon Hartley SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA 1:46.186 +3.095s 11

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