Max fourth at third free practice Abu Dhabi
Published on 24 November 2018 by Mike Motilall
Max Verstappen came in fourth at the third and final free practice in the run up to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The quickest time was set by world champion Lewis Hamilton, who remained ahead of both Ferrari’s in his Mercedes. Daniel Ricciardo, driving the second Red Bull, finished sixth fastest and dropped out in the closing stages of the practice due to technical issues.
At the start of the session, the sun is shining and with 33 degrees it’s very warm on the 5,554 meter long Yas Marina Circuit. The track temperature is 43 degrees. All in all, not the conditions that is expected for qualifying and the race. This session is mainly used by the teams for testing parts for the 2019 campaign.
The Sauber-drivers, Toro Rosso, Haas, McLaren and Williams take charge of matters and head out. Both Red Bulls, Ferrari’s, Renault, Force India’s and Mercedes are still inside while Sergey Sirotkin ultimately is the first to clock a time.
At the start of the session there isn’t much going on track wise. After ten minutes, the Williams’ drivers are the only one with a time on the clock. At Aston Martin Red Bull Racing all is calm, both drivers are still standing next to their cars. As oppose to Red Bull and Mercedes, Ferrari is out on track and is leading the pack.
After well over twenty minutes, Charles Leclerc spins in Turn 19 and damages his rear wing of his Sauber. He is able to continue on, but leaves some debris on the track from his rear wing.
By now, Max is also out on track. On a set of the ultra-softs he comes in second in his first flying lap. He went purple in the final sector and outpaced everyone. The FIA reports that Kimi Raikkonen is under investigating. The Finn apparently crossed the white line exiting the pit when we went out on track again.
In the closing stages of the session we see Vettel, on a set of the hyper-softs, tightening his grip even more on first place. The German is almost half a second a stray from both Mercedes who are second and third. Max, having dropped back to P4, is inside at that moment.
With still twelve minutes to go, Max heads out again on a new set of the hyper-softs. The youngster, having dropped back to P6, puts his RB14 after another flying lap in fourth. Ahead of him are Hamilton, Raikkonen and Vettel in P3. Behind of him we see Bottas and Ricciardo in fifth and sixth.
With still four minutes remaining, Ricciardo is forced to park his RB14 trackside, between Turns 9 and 10, with some kind of technical problem. The ill fortuned Ozzie has no other choice than to walk home. After Romain Grosjean and Pierre Gasly run into each other, causing the latter to lose some parts of his Toro Rosso, the session comes to an end.
|4||Max Verstappen||VER||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||1:37.747||+0.571s||14|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||RIC||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||1:38.090||+0.914s||11|
|7||Romain Grosjean||GRO||Haas Ferrari||1:38.304||+1.128s||13|
|10||Esteban Ocon||OCO||Force India Mercedes||1:39.011||+1.835s||7|
|11||Sergio Perez||PER||Force India Mercedes||1:39.053||+1.877s||14|
|12||Brendon Hartley||HAR||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:39.074||+1.898s||17|
|13||Charles Leclerc||LEC||Sauber Ferrari||1:39.282||+2.106s||9|
|14||Kevin Magnussen||MAG||Haas Ferrari||1:39.612||+2.436s||12|
|15||Pierre Gasly||GAS||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:39.740||+2.564s||12|
|16||Fernando Alonso||ALO||McLaren Renault||1:39.974||+2.798s||12|
|17||Marcus Ericsson||ERI||Sauber Ferrari||1:39.997||+2.821s||19|
|18||Lance Stroll||STR||Williams Mercedes||1:40.117||+2.941s||18|
|19||Stoffel Vandoorne||VAN||McLaren Renault||1:40.233||+3.057s||13|
|20||Sergey Sirotkin||SIR||Williams Mercedes||1:41.182||+4.006s||21|