Miami, FP3: Perez sets the pace in final practice

Leclerc 2nd, Verstappen 3rd

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By Olivier Ferret

7 May 2022 - 20:11
Miami, FP3: Perez sets the pace in (...)

Red Bull Racing’s Sergio Pérez went quickest in the final practice session for the 2022 FIA Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix, beating Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc by almost two tenths of a second as Alpine’s Esteban Ocon crashed out.

Verstappen was one of the first on track, seeking to make up lost track time after missing significant portions of both Friday practice sessions. He quickly claimed P1 with a lap of 1:34.037s, but after five minutes Leclerc powered past that with a soft tyre lap of 1:32.250.

Verstappen was quickly back on top with a lap of 1:31.55 after 10 minutes.

There was little time for Leclerc to respond, however, as Ocon crashed heavily to bring out the red flags. The French driver lost control on the slippery track off line in Turn 13 and he slid hard into the barriers on the outside of the corner causing substantial damaged to the left-front of his Alpine.

After a 13-minute delay running resumed and Leclerc continued with soft tyre running as Verstappen evaluated the yellow-banded medium Pirelli compound.

Leclerc eventually managed to steal top spot with a little less than 20 minutes left in the session. The championship points leader set a lap of 1:30.981 to put 0.3s between him and Verstappen.

Like his team-mate, Pérez had spent most of the session on longer runs and as the session headed towards its final 10 minutes he was well down the order. However, he then bolted on soft tyres and jumped ahead of Leclerc with a lap of 1:30.699.

Verstappen then took over at the top of the order with a lap of 1:30.649. Pérez wasn’t done, though, and he responded with purple first and third sectors to again claim P1 with a lap of 1:30.304.

There were still five minutes on the clock and Verstappen and Leclerc went for a final run. Verstappen’s attempt ended with a spin in the chicane and in which the Dutchman was lucky not to hit the wall. Leclerc, meanwhile, looked on course to challenge Pérez early in the lap but he took too much out of his rubber and he was forced to settle for P2 at the end of the session.

Fernando Alonso finished fourth for Alpine ahead of Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel and Haas’ Mick Schumacher. Kevin Magnussen finished eighth in the second Haas ahead of Williams’ Alex Albon and McLaren’s Lando Norris.

Pos.DriverCarTimeLaps
01 Sergio Perez Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:30.304 21
02 Charles Leclerc Ferrari F1-75 1:30.498 23
03 Max Verstappen Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:30.649 20
04 Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault A522 1:31.036 18
05 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:31.049 24
06 Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:31.050 19
07 Carlos Sainz Ferrari F1-75 1:31.172 24
08 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:31.227 20
09 Alex Albon Williams Mercedes FW44 1:31.501 14
10 Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:31.594 18
11 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:31.659 24
12 Lance Stroll Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:31.665 22
13 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:31.728 19
14 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:31.885 26
15 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W13 1:31.890 20
16 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:31.901 18
17 George Russell Mercedes W13 1:31.924 19
18 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:32.051 16
19 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW44 1:32.376 16
20 Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault A522 -:—.--- 3

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