Spa, FP3: Hamilton on top in final practice for Belgian Grand Prix
Ocon 2nd, Vettel... last!
Lewis Hamilton took top spot in the final practice session for the Belgian Grand Prix, with the championship leader finishing two tenths of a second ahead of Renault’s Esteban Ocon. Lando Norris was third for McLaren.
With light drizzle dampening the track there was little running in the opening portion of the hour, with just Haas’ Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean testing the conditions as they attempted to make up for time lost yesterday due to engine issues with their cars.
When they returned to the pit lane a long lull followed as light rain continued to at several points around the 7km circuit.
The action resumed after the half way point had been reached with Norris and Albon initially leading the way on yellow tyres. Hamilton then took P1 with a lap of 1m44.422 set on softs, before the at was eclipsed by Bottas who posted a time of 1m43.813s. Verstappen then split the Mercedes duo with his first lap of the morning, alson on soft compound tyres.
The field then returned to the pit lane ahead of the qualifying but when they did take to the track the results were inconclusive as errors and traffic upset the order.
Ocon set the standard with a lap of 1:43.485s but Hamilton then edged ahead with his best time of 1:43.255. Bottas and Verstappen failed to improve in the final runs, with the Mercedes drivers sliding wide on the exit of La Source and Verstappen caught in a train of slow cars as driver backed each other up on the run to the Bus Stop chicane as they looked for clear air ahead of flying laps.
Norris took third place with a lap of 1:43.641, while Albon finished a little under a tenth of second further back in fourth. Bottas ended the session in fifth place ahead of Verstappen and the second Renault of Daniel Ricciardo. Eighth place went to Racing Point’s Lance Stroll who finished ahead of McLaren’s Carlos Sainz and the second Racing Point of Sergio Perez.
It was another disappointing outing for Ferrari, however. Charles Leclerc finished in 17th place, 1.8s behind Hamilton, while team-mate Sebastian Vettel finished in last place.
|01||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes W11||1:43.255||9|
|02||Esteban Ocon||Renault RS20||1:43.485||9|
|03||Lando Norris||McLaren Renault MCL35||1:43.641||12|
|04||Alex Albon||Red Bull Honda RB16||1:43.731||13|
|05||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes W11||1:43.813||9|
|06||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Honda RB16||1:43.896||10|
|07||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault RS20||1:43.973||8|
|08||Lance Stroll||Racing Point Mercedes RP20||1:43.988||12|
|09||Carlos Sainz||McLaren Renault MCL35||1:44.006||13|
|10||Sergio Perez||Racing Point Mercedes RP20||1:44.180||12|
|11||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri Honda AT01||1:44.508||14|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||AlphaTauri Honda AT01||1:44.543||14|
|13||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Mercedes FW43||1:44.771||11|
|14||Kevin Magnussen||Haas Ferrari VF-20||1:44.841||10|
|15||Romain Grosjean||Haas Ferrari VF-20||1:44.844||16|
|16||Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39||1:44.932||11|
|17||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari SF1000||1:45.147||12|
|18||George Russell||Williams Mercedes FW43||1:45.157||11|
|19||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C39||1:45.190||13|
|20||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari SF1000||1:45.420||12|