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FP3 Report | Sergio Perez leads a Red Bull 1-2 in the final practice.

FP3 Report | Sergio Perez leads a Red Bull 1-2 in the final practice.

19-11-2022 11:33

Oli Lewis

Despite some slow early running, the track was busy towards the end and resulted in Sergio Perez leading the way by the end of the session, as he lead his teammate Max Verstappen, ahead of Lewis Hamilton, who may be facing a grid penalty later. Other than that the notable incident of the session was that of Pierre Gasly, who brought out the red flag.

Ferrari slow in final runs

Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz both went out at the end trying to set fast laps on the soft tyres but found themselves only managing to get into sixth and seventh, behind both Red Bull, Mercedes, and the singular McLaren of Lando Norris. As they are both six-tenths off the pace, which seems to be consistent with them being caught by Mercedes in this later half of the season. 

While Leclerc is claiming the lack of pace is due to the soft tyre falling off in the first few corners meaning that he can't compete with the lap times of those ahead of him.

Hamilton ahead early

Despite the limited running, it was Hamilton who lead the pack early, ahead of the Ferrari of Leclerc and then the Alpines. While Verstappen still hadn't set a lap but the time we go 30 minutes into the session. The early part of FP3 today was highlighted by a yellow flag brought out by Esteban Ocon at turn 14, although for what is thought to be a spin which he managed to keep out of the walls. Pierre Gasly's front tyre implodes to some extent as the tyre comes off the rim, and the brow that sits about the tyre in the 2022 car flies off when he hit the curb at turn nine.

The seven-time world champion might be in trouble later as he's going to be investigated after the session for overtaking under a red flag, but it looks more complicated than it may seem, as there seem to be three different signals being given to the Mercedes driver at the same time.

Little running early

Due to the extreme heat and sun in Abu Dhabi this morning not being representative of any of the conditions that we'll be racing or qualifying under, it meant we saw little and conservative running early on in the session and the teams looked to conserve tyres and performance in avoidance of wasting it in said conditions.


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