Formula 1

Bottas tops Final Practice in Germany, Stroll misses Session due to Illness

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Credit: LAT Images

Valtteri Bottas continued to show very strong in practice, topping Saturday morning’s session at the Nürburgring.

Today’s session should have been the third of the weekend at the Nürburgring, but adverse weather conditions cancelled both practices on Friday. This meant, Saturday morning’s running was the one and only practice at a cold Eifel Grand Prix.

One of the main reason’s yesterday’s sessions couldn’t go ahead was due to fog affecting the landing pad of the medical helicopter. There has now been a change in plans that the landing pad is now approximately three kilometres away from the ring, meaning if there is an incident where someone needs to be transported away, they will have to be driven three kilometres first. The required time limit for a casualty transfer at a Formula 1 race is twenty minutes and can be completed by road if able too.

The surprise omission from todays practice was Lance Stroll. He was unable to attend the session due to being unwell. His situation is currently being evaluated to see if he will be ready for qualifying. No stand-in driver has been confirmed if Stroll is unable to complete his weekend, however, Nico Hülkenberg is now at the track.  His team-mate at the BWT Racing Point Formula One Team, Sergio Pérez, had a good session putting his car seventh.

Up front, Bottas lead a Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team one-two with his team-mate Lewis Hamilton in second, while Scuderia Ferrari had one of their strongest practice sessions of the year. The team have usually been floating around the low midfield, but Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel were able to put their cars third and fifth respectively.

Aston Martin Red Bull Racing duo Max Verstappen and Alexander Albon finished fourth and ninth respectively, but I’m sure they’ll be wanting to beat the fast-looking Ferrari’s come qualifying.

Lando Norris continued to be the stronger of the driver pairing at McLaren F1 Team. He finished in sixth were his team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr. was only able to finish thirteenth. Norris put on a small show for viewers, racing with Charles Leclerc in the dying stages. I’m sure Leclerc was hoping that wasn’t his future team-mate as he radioed in asking if that was Carlos or Lando.

Daniel Ricciardo was about the out-perform his team-mate of Esteban Ocon yet again. Ocon has trailed behind his Renault DP World F1 Team team-mate in all aspect of a race weekend recently and will hope to come out of that shadow in qualifying. They finished eighth and eleventh respectively. Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda, on the other hand, did not look as promising as the team had been in recent weeks. Pierre Gasly finished tenth with Daniil Kyvat in twelfth.

Romain Grosjean gave us probably one of the most wholesome radio moments this year with “it’s a beautiful track, mate”. Last time out at Nürburgring, the driver secured a podium in third, so the place holds special memories for him. He finished in fifteenth with his team-mate Kevin Magnussen behind him in sixteenth. Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN duo Kimi Räikkönen and Antonio Giovinazzi didn’t spark anything special either as they finished fourteenth and eighteenth respectively.

Both Williams Racing drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi took a spin off the track during the session. Russell was fortunate there was a large expanse of grass on the exit of the final chicane when he went off, meaning he avoided the wall. He finished in seventeenth with Latifi in nineteenth, with the Canadian having a spin of his own at the final corner that brought out double-waved yellow flags as he attempted to recover to the track.

Pos#DriverNat.TeamTimeGapLaps
177Valtteri BottasFINMercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:26.22525
244Lewis HamiltonGBRMercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:26.3610.136s27
316Charles LeclercMONScuderia Ferrari1:26.6810.456s25
433Max VerstappenNEDAston Martin Red Bull Racing1:26.8960.671s24
55Sebastian VettelGERScuderia Ferrari1:27.0380.813s25
64Lando NorrisGBRMcLaren F1 Team1:27.1670.942s29
711Sergio PérezMEXBWT Racing Point Formula One Team1:27.2451.020s25
83Daniel RicciardoAUSRenault DP World F1 Team1:27.3921.167s23
923Alexander AlbonTHAAston Martin Red Bull Racing1:27.4491.224s23
1010Pierre GaslyFRAScuderia AlphaTauri Honda1:27.5281.303s28
1131Esteban OconFRARenault DP World F1 Team1:27.6341.409s27
1226Daniil KvyatRUSScuderia AlphaTauri Honda1:27.7951.570s26
1355Carlos Sainz Jr.ESPMcLaren F1 Team1:27.9241.699s29
147Kimi RäikkönenFINAlfa Romeo Racing1:27.9561.731s25
158Romain GrosjeanFRAHaas F1 Team1:28.1151.890s27
1620Kevin MagnussenDENHaas F1 Team1:28.2932.068s27
1763George RussellGBRWilliams Racing1:28.3432.118s30
1899Antonio GiovinazziITAAlfa Romeo Racing1:28.3702.145s25
196Nicholas LatifiCANWilliams Racing1:28.9412.716s26
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