Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport‘s Lewis Hamilton tops the final practice session ahead of qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix.
The reigning world champion makes three out of three so far by producing the fastest time with a 1:22.292 to beat both Scuderia Ferrari drivers.
The Ferrari’s round off the top three with Sebastian Vettel in second leading ahead of Charles Leclerc. Both drivers managed to break into the 1:22 bracket alongside Hamilton in their hot laps.
Rich Energy Haas F1 Team were the best of the rest by taking up fourth and fifth with Romain Grosjean beating team-mate Kevin Magnussen. Pierre Gasly sets the sixth fastest time of the session.
Valtteri Bottas in the Mercedes didn’t set similar pace compare to his team-mate and the Mercedes driver could only produced the seventh best time. Toro Rosso‘s Daniil Kvyat continues his strong practice sessions by going eighth fastest.
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing‘s Max Verstappen produced the ninth best time with a new chassis fitted, beating Renault‘s Daniel Ricciardo who rounds up the top ten.
The last session before qualifying began starting with Verstappen heading out on track first. Williams‘ George Russell set the first time of the session with a 1:30.332. Team-mate Robert Kubica followed that up with a 1:29.310 and jumped ahead of Russel ten minuets into the session.
Both Red Bull drivers of Verstappen and Gasly hit the track early into the session and jumped ahead of both Williams’ cars with Verstappen setting a 1:25.106 on the medium tyres and placed himself fastest overall with Gasly in second. Ricciardo managed to split the two Red Bull by going second fastest overall.
Verstappen’s time fastest overall was short lived as Kvyat and Grosjean pushed for the top of the time sheets. The Russian driver placing a 1:24.860, with the Haas driver only 0.009 seconds short of the top.
Mercedes and Ferrari headed out on track with 40 minutes left and immediately set the pace with Vettel and Bottas pushing into the 1:23s and taking over the top two positions before Hamilton set a 1:23.699 to go fastest overall. The reigning champion improved on his time at the top and produced a 1:23.360 as team-mate Bottas improved to go ahead of both Ferrari cars in second.
During an in lap, Kubica made contact with the wall at the entrance of the pit lane, leaving debris at the entrance of the pit lane causing some cars to take avoiding action. The damage to Kubica’s car wasn’t enough to end his practice session as the debris was quickly removed.
Vettel produced a smooth but quick lap time by breaking into the 1:22 bracket, going fastest overall but Hamilton soon regained the top spot by setting a 1:22.292, around three tenths quicker than the Ferrari driver. Outside of the top three, both Haas cars of Grosjean and Magnussen round up the top five with less than ten minutes remaining of the session.
Gasly made the jump to sixth place ahead of Bottas and Kvyat, whilst team-mate Verstappen could only produced the ninth best time of the session, just piping ahead of former team-mate Ricciardo in tenth.
With the final session before qualifying concluded, Hamilton once again set the fastest time ahead of both Ferrari cars. But Vettel and Leclerc have shown potential in their hot laps and could make a charge for pole position against Hamilton.
|1||44||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport||1:22.292||12|
|2||5||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari||1:22.556||0.264||12|
|3||16||Charles Leclerc||Scuderia Ferrari||1:22.749||0.457||12|
|4||8||Romain Grosjean||Rich Energy Haas F1 Team||1:23.112||0.820||17|
|5||20||Kevin Magnussen||Rich Energy Haas F1 Team||1:23.334||1.042||15|
|6||10||Pierre Gasly||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||1:23.367||1.075||17|
|7||77||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport||1:23.422||1.130||17|
|8||26||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda||1:23.442||1.150||16|
|9||33||Max Verstappen||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||1:23.481||1.189||19|
|10||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault F1 Team||1:23.695||1.403||14|
|11||27||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault F1 Team||1:23.737||1.445||15|
|12||99||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Racing||1:23.831||1.539||16|
|13||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||McLaren Formula 1 Team||1:24.049||1.757||21|
|14||11||Sergio Perez||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||1:24.082||1.790||18|
|15||23||Alexander Albon||Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda||1:24.328||2.036||15|
|16||18||Lance Stroll||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||1:24.345||2.053||16|
|17||7||Kimi Raikkonnen||Alfa Romeo Racing||1:24.402||2.110||18|
|18||4||Lando Norris||McLaren Formula 1 Team||1:24.568||2.276||16|
|19||63||George Russell||ROKiT Williams Racing||1:25.944||3.652||14|
|20||88||Robert Kubica||ROKiT Williams Racing||1:26.589||4.297||16|