Hamilton fastest in FP3, but Vettel bridges the gap

FP3 Standings
Final standings after FP3

Lewis Hamilton gave the British contingent something to smile about in the typical British weather after setting the fastest time in FP3. A lot of Mercedes running throughout the free practice sessions has been on the soft tyres, but Lewis was able to post a time 1:28:063 on the Supersofts. The pace advantage we saw on Friday, at least on the faster tyre, has been all but wiped out; Sebastian definitely felt much more comfortable in the Ferrari, setting a time of 1:28:095 and splitting the Mercedes.

 

Nico Hulkenberg again impressed in the Renault, securing 5th in FP3 with a time of 1:29:480 and ahead of the Red Bulls. Developments overnight revealed that Daniel Ricciardo has had to take a new gearbox and incur a 5 place grid penalty. There wasn’t a failure of the gearbox after FP2; the team discovered that it needed to be changed after precautionary checks revealed a possible failure before the end of the race on Sunday. With Daniel and Valteri very much out of sync with the rest of the grid, expect a lot of overtaking from the two during the race.

It was a solid yet amusing session for Verstappen, securing a P8 behind Romain Grosjean. A lot of the Dutchman’s pace was untapped; the Red Bulls mistimed sending him out on the Supersofts once the typical English weather had set in. His highlight in FP3 came in the closing stages; Max took an unfortunate spin at turn 7 which went un-noticed by his race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase. Max made him aware that he was the cause of the yellow flag, resulting in a few chuckles over the radio, a nice moment in a somewhat uneventful practice session.

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - British Grand Prix - Practice Day - Silverstone, England
Max Verstappen getting some running in at Silverstone before going off in FP3, Courtesy of F1 Fantatic

Qualifying prediction (before penalties are applied):
Qualifying is going to be very close, with the possibility of rain mixing the grid up even further. The Mercedes have looked strong all weekend, and I think with Lewis having the backing of the British crowd I would be surprised if he doesn’t secure pole. The Red Bulls have looked good this weekend, giving them the opportunity to jump ahead of Kimi if he doesn’t feel comfortable in the Ferrari.

  1. Lewis Hamilton
  2. Sebastian Vettel
  3. Valteri Bottas
  4. Daniel Ricciardo
  5. Kimi Raikkonen
  6. Max Verstappen
  7. Nico Hulkenberg
  8. Esteban Ocon
  9. Felipe Massa
  10. Sergio Perez
  11. Fernando Alonso
  12. Carlos Sainz
  13. Lance Stroll
  14. Romain Grosjean
  15. Daniil Kvyat
  16. Kevin Magnussen
  17. Stoffel Vandoorne
  18. Jolyon Palmer
  19. Marcus Ericsson
  20. Pascal Wehrlein

 

JrT

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