Max Verstappen leads the way in FP3 ahead of Hamilton and Leclerc

08-05-2021 11:54
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Max Verstappen leads the way in FP3 ahead of Hamilton and Leclerc

Max Verstappen topped FP3 for the Spanish Grand Prix to deny Mercedes a clean sweep in Barcelona. Verstappen set a time late in the session to beat Lewis Hamilton to top spot.

In a slow burning session, it came alive with just ten minutes to go as Max Verstappen set a 1:17.8 to go top of the timesheets despite suffering from oversteer at the final turn of his lap. Mercedes had led the way for much of the session with Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas looking to increase their grip on the weekend. It looked as if Hamilton would do so but Verstappen's lap meant he had to settle for second.

Ferrari ended up splitting the Mercedes duo, with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz impressing around the Circuit de Catalunya. Their good form meant Bottas finished down in fifth, but it will be interesting to see if Mercedes have more to give having been very dominant over much of the weekend so far.

Lando Norris continued his good form finishing sixth, with Pierre Gasly (P7), Daniel Ricciardo (P8), Kimi Raikkonen (P9) and Sergio Perez (P10) completing the top ten.

A slow-burning session

It took almost 20 minutes for the session to come alive with Fernando Alonso setting the only time during the opening quarter. When it finally got going Mercedes immediately marked their authority on it but ultimately it will be Red Bull and specifically Verstappen who will be the happier as they topped the session to just reaffirm that they are a serious contender this weekend.

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