until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Formula 1

Hamilton fastest in final Canadian GP practice

by Jack Cozens
4 min read

Lewis Hamilton set the pace by almost four tenths of a second in final Canadian Grand Prix practice in what was a hugely encouraging session for his Mercedes Formula 1 team.

Only a late Max Verstappen effort prevented a Mercedes 1-2, but Hamilton's benchmark 1m12.549s was the most convincing lap in FP3 by a considerable margin.

Mercedes switched Hamilton and George Russell to its revised front wing for the first time this weekend in FP3, the team having chosen to hold it back on Friday to conserve parts.

In what was essentially the first representative session of the weekend given rain rendered the majority of FP1 obsolete and also impacted second practice on Friday, it was the W14 that looked most impressive across the final hour of practice.

Russell - who ran the new front wing design in Monaco - briefly sat at the top of the times but his time was soon smashed by Hamilton with what was ultimately the session's best effort with more than 10 minutes left on the clock.

At that point Hamilton held the fastest times in all three sectors and was more than seven tenths clear.

Russell and Verstappen both subsequently improved but even with Verstappen - whose Red Bull team changed his car's engine as a precaution following an energy recovery system issue in FP2 - setting the fastest time in the final sector on his final attempt he still ended up 0.374s off Hamilton's Mercedes.

That effort moved Russell down to third ahead of Lance Stroll's Aston Martin - one of the cars that had got the soft tyre working well in Friday practice as well.

Stroll was less than a tenth away from the Mercedes and had three tenths in hand over team-mate Fernando Alonso, who'd been fastest in the early stages of the session on hard tyres before he and Stroll diverted attention to long-run simulations on the mediums.

Like Stroll, Daniel Ricciardo was another impressive interloper in the leading group and ended up with the sixth-fastest time for RB, sandwiched between the McLarens of Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris.

Ricciardo, the 2014 Canadian GP winner, was a contender throughout FP3 and ended the session more than four tenths ahead of team-mate Yuki Tsunoda - who was 15th but just 1.1s off the pace.

Alonso and the second Red Bull of Sergio Perez were eighth and ninth, with Monaco GP winner Charles Leclerc the lead Ferrari in a lowly 10th.

Leclerc complained early in the session that his car was "still s*** on the brakes" and remarked "we are extremely slow" at the end of the session. He was eight tenths down on Hamilton, with his team-mate Carlos Sainz a further two tenths back in 12th.

In what was a busy session, with 574 laps completed between the teams, there was one brief interruption early on when Zhou Guanyu spun exiting Turn 1 and nerfed the wall with the rear of his Sauber on the outside of Turn 2.

But he was not the only driver forced to sit out part of the session - Alex Albon missing the final flying attempts after he clipped the ‘wall of champions’ exiting the final chicane.

His right-rear tyre appeared to bend inwards following that impact, though Albon was able to recover his Williams to the garage.

Verstappen had a similar, if firmer, impact on his final push lap but did not appear to sustain any damage.

Practice 3 Results

PosNameCarBest TimeGap Leader
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1m12.549s
2Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda RBPT1m12.923s+0.374s
3George RussellMercedes1m12.957s+0.408s
4Lance StrollAston Martin-Mercedes1m13.026s+0.477s
5Oscar PiastriMcLaren-Mercedes1m13.266s+0.717s
6Daniel RicciardoRB-Honda RBPT1m13.279s+0.730s
7Lando NorrisMcLaren-Mercedes1m13.293s+0.744s
8Fernando AlonsoAston Martin-Mercedes1m13.340s+0.791s
9Sergio PérezRed Bull-Honda RBPT1m13.342s+0.793s
10Charles LeclercFerrari1m13.349s+0.800s
11Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1m13.439s+0.890s
12Carlos SainzFerrari1m13.570s+1.021s
13Valtteri BottasSauber-Ferrari1m13.642s+1.093s
14Logan SargeantWilliams-Mercedes1m13.663s+1.114s
15Yuki TsunodaRed Bull-Honda RBPT1m13.716s+1.167s
16Pierre GaslyAlpine-Renault1m13.737s+1.188s
17Nico HülkenbergHaas-Ferrari1m13.777s+1.228s
18Alex AlbonWilliams-Mercedes1m13.880s+1.331s
19Esteban OconAlpine-Renault1m14.075s+1.526s
20Guanyu ZhouSauber-Ferrari1m18.656s+6.107s
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Email
  • More Networks