until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Formula 1

Ferrari 1-2-3 on final day of 2022 F1 running

by Scott Mitchell-Malm
3 min read

Ferrari ended 2022 by topping Formula 1’s post-season Abu Dhabi test with its cars first, second and third in the times.

The unusual 1-2-3 feat was achieved by race drivers Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz sharing the day in the nominated ‘tyre test’ car, while Robert Shwartzman fulfilled the ‘young driver’ test requirement.

Leclerc drove in the morning for Ferrari and topped the times from the opening hour until Sainz took over and lapped just over a tenth of a second faster in the afternoon – although this was still 1.4s slower than Max Verstappen’s pole time for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, indicating how unrepresentative the laptimes from this test are.

Shwartzman was a couple of hundredths slower than Leclerc and four tenths clear of Pierre Gasly, who jumped up to fourth late on in his first appearance for Alpine.

Xpb 1187942 Hires

World champion Verstappen took over Red Bull’s tyre test work in the afternoon from team-mate Sergio Perez and was fifth ahead of Alex Albon, who was just over a tenth quicker than his incoming 2023 Williams team-mate Logan Sargeant.

Nyck de Vries was eighth fastest in his first appearance for AlphaTauri ahead of racing for the team next year, and was the busiest driver completing 151 laps – just under 500 miles of the Yas Marina circuit.

Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll and Red Bull young driver Liam Lawson completed the top 10.

Fernando Alonso ended the day 12th fastest and half a tenth slower than regular driver Stroll on his first appearance for Aston Martin, while Oscar Piastri – the driver who should have replaced Alonso at Alpine – was 14th with McLaren.

Nico Hulkenberg’s Haas debut ended with him 19th fastest and a couple of tenths quicker than reserve driver Pietro Fittipaldi, and he completed over 100 laps on his F1 comeback despite an early morning stoppage.

Motor Racing Formula One Testing Abu Dhabi, Uae

With 2023 Pirelli tyres and teams having different allocations and programmes for each driver, laptimes are particularly meaningless even beyond the usual caveats of testing with a lack of knowledge about fuel loads or engine modes.

Comparisons to the race weekend or even team to team are almost impossible but for teams and drivers this was still a very useful experience, especially as day turned to evening and track temperature cooled, providing more representative assessments internally.

And the regulations meant plenty of young drivers were given some rare F1 opportunities.

Mercedes ran F1 debutant Frederik Vesti, for example, while fellow F2 drivers Jack Doohan, Liam Lawson and Theo Pourchaire returned for Alpine, Red Bull and Alfa Romeo respectively.

Plus, Ferrari, Aston Martin and Haas were able to hand some mileage to their test drivers Shwartzman, Felipe Drugovich and Fittipaldi.

Abu Dhabi test times

Pos Driver Car Time Laps
1 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1m25.245s 65
2 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1m25.383s 56
3 Robert Shwartzman Ferrari 1m25.400s 116
4 Pierre Gasly Alpine 1m25.689s 130
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1m25.845s 76
6 Alex Albon Williams 1m25.959s 118
7 Logan Sargeant Williams 1m26.063s 82
8 Nyck de Vries AlphaTauri 1m26.111s 151
9 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1m26.263s 70
10 Liam Lawson Red Bull 1m26.281s 111
11 Jack Doohan Alpine 1m26.297s 111
12 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1m26.312s 97
13 Sergio Perez Red Bull 1m26.333s 88
14 Oscar Piastri McLaren 1m26.340s 123
15 Felipe Drugovich Aston Martin 1m26.595s 106
16 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1m26.709s 129
17 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m26.750s 67
18 Lando Norris McLaren 1m26.890s 115
19 Nico Hulkenberg Haas 1m27.000s 110
20 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1m27.123s 135
21 Pietro Fittipaldi Haas 1m27.172s 99
22 Frederik Vesti Mercedes 1m27.216s 124
23 George Russell Mercedes 1m27.240s 73
24 Theo Pourchaire Alfa Romeo 1m27.591s 106
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