Abu Dhabi blog: How the post-season test unfolded at Yas Marina

Robert Shwartzman Ferrari Abu Dhabi test. November 2022

Robert Shwartzman Ferrari Abu Dhabi test. November 2022

The curtain has officially come down on the F1 2022 season. PlanetF1 were live in Abu Dhabi to bring you all the action from the post-season test.

The final day of on-track F1 action in 2022 saw two tests running concurrently on Tuesday at Yas Marina. Each team provided one car for Pirelli tyre testing, which was being carried out by the usual race drivers, or the experienced new arrivals.

In the second car, the teams were also carrying out a Young Driver Test, where their junior prospects were given a chance to shine.

Here is how the entire day unfolded…

Final leaderboard

Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:25.245 65 laps
Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:25.383 56
Robert Shwartzman Ferrari 1:25.400 116
Pierre Gasly Alpine 1:25.689 130
Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:25.845 76
Alex Albon Williams 1:25.959 118
Logan Sargeant Williams 1:26.063 82
Nyck de Vries AlphaTauri 1:26.111 151
Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1:26.263 70
Liam Lawson Red Bull 1:26.281 111
Jack Doohan Alpine 1:26.297 111
Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:26.312 97
Sergio Perez Red Bull 1:26.333 88
Oscar Piastri McLaren 1:26.340 123
Felipe Drugovich Aston Martin 1:26.595 106
Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1:26.709 129
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:26.750 67
Lando Norris McLaren 1:26.890 115
Nico Hulkenberg Haas 1:27.000 110
Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:27.123 135
Pietro Fittipaldi Haas 1:27.172 99
Frederik Vesti Mercedes 1:27.216 124
George Russell Mercedes 1:27.240 73
Theo Pourchaire Alfa Romeo 1:27.591 106

Which drivers were in action at the post-season test?

All times are local

1800: Chequered Flag!Β That’s your lot, folks. Formula 1 2022 has officially come to an end. Ferrari have finished the day top of the timesheet and will now go on to win the World Championships in 2023…thanks for joining us, not just today, but throughout the entire 2022 season. It’s been a blast! Roll on next year.

1745: Ferrari have reasserted themselves at the front, as Shwartzman claims back third place to make it a 1-2-3 again. The three Ferrari drivers times range from 1:25.2 to 1:25.4, so it looks like they’re getting the most out of the car…

1730: No change at the front as the top four remain the same, but Logan Sargeant has just put in an impressive time to slot into P5 right behind Albon! He’s up to 82 laps in total, and his time is 0.104 slower than Albon’s.

1710: Into the final hour of F1 2022, and Alex Albon has joined in the fun at the front as he’s popped into fourth with a 1:25.959. That means Shwartzman is down to fourth, just ahead of Stroll and Alonso.

Leading the lap tally is Bottas, as he’s done a mammoth 127 laps so far (two race distances). At the other extreme, Sainz has done the fewest laps despite being the quickest. He’s on 36 laps, but bear in mind he only took over for this afternoon’s session.

1645: Approaching the final hour of track time, and Max Verstappen has ruined Ferrari’s stranglehold at the top (not for the first time this year). Verstappen pops in a 1:25.845 on his 54th lap of the track, and rises to third on the timing screens to demote Shwartzman to fourth.

1630: 90 minutes to go, and Lance Stroll has popped his Aston Martin into P4 behind the three Ferraris (that sounds weird, doesn’t it?). Stroll’s time is a tenth clear of what Alonso managed earlier…

1620: We doubt Lewis will be sad to see this one go…

1600: It’s a Ferrari 1-2-3 at the top as Carlos Sainz pops his F1-75 to the front with a 1:25.245 – he’s taken over from Leclerc on tyre testing duties.

Leclerc is second, with Robert Shwartzman third as he continues with Ferrari’s Young Driver running.

1555: We asked Fernando Alonso how he was feeling after his first run in the Aston Martin. Here’s what he had to say!

1550: Hamilton is starting to find his feet this afternoon – he’s up to P9 and has just finished his 15th lap of the session. Out of the top 10, just he and Lando Norris are on track.

1537:Β Fair to say Fernando Alonso is very happy with his first day in the Aston Martin car:Β “When I signed, I was 90% happy. When they finished the season strongly, I was 100%. This morning, I was 100%, now I’m 100 plus!” – We’ll have the full story on site very shortly.

1530:Β George Russell is done for the day. Lewis Hamilton is due to take over very soon. We’re sure he is really looking forward to driving the W13 one last time.

1509:Β Nico Hulkenberg Γ­s doing a good job of making up for lost time after his earlier stoppage. 67 laps and counting for the king of F1 returns.


1440: Lando Norris has had a spin! Around he went at Turn 13, but he avoided hitting anything and he’s back underway without issue.

1433: Verstappen and Sainz have joined the action in the last few minutes! Sainz came out and did a short six-lap stint to kick off his afternoon, while Verstappen has done three laps.

1425: Alonso is back in the pits – 97 laps on the board. Expecting him to hand over to Stroll at any moment.

1420: Still no sign of the remaining four drivers. Norris is currently pounding around, as are Albon, Pourchaire, Piastri, Hulkenberg, and Sargeant.

1400: All very steady at the moment and, even as the unofficial lunch hour ends, we’re yet to see our new participants for the afternoon join in. Sergio Perez hands over to Max Verstappen for Red Bull’s tyre testing programme, Fernando Alonso climbs out of his Aston Martin for Lance Stroll, Lewis Hamilton takes over the Mercedes from George Russell, and Carlos Sainz gets his last outing in the F1-75 after Leclerc’s morning session.

1335: It may not be an official break, but almost everyone is back in the pits – just four cars on track now.

1325:Β And it wasn’t. All fine and dandy again now. We’re set to see Max Verstappen, Lewis Hamilton, Carlos Sainz and Lance Stroll on track later this afternoon. Lewis didn’t pull a sickie after all!

13:12: Red flag – debris on track between Turns 3 and 4. Can confirm Nyck de Vries was NOT on track at the time (if you know, you know!)

It shouldn’t be a long red flag.

13:05: We’ve hit the unofficial lunch hour and, while most are back in the pits, some are electing to continue. Leclerc is on track, as are Norris, Albon, and Russell.

1258: Most of the cars are back in the pits now – Albon, Pourchaire, Fittipaldi, Sargeant, and Vesti are the only drivers on track.


1250: 10 minutes until the unofficial lunch hour, and it’s still Leclerc out front with a 1:25.383 as he carries out Pirelli’s test programme. Robert Shwartzman is second in the other Ferrari, carrying out Ferrari’s Young Driver obligation for this test.

Alonso has had a very productive morning – he’s in third with 69 laps on the board.

1239:Β Nico Hulkenberg is back out on track for Haas following his stoppage earlier. That’s cost him about two hours of precious track time as he looks to blow off a few cobwebs.

1233:Β Into the final 30 minutes of the first session now. The one-hour lunch break coming up at 1300 local time. The afternoon session runs from 1400 to 1800.

1226: Yip, Piastri is back into the action.

1224: With the McLaren having been returned to the garage, it looks as if Piastri could be back out again soon.

1209: Pierre Gasly has covered more laps than anyone else, 66, in Alonso’s 2022 car!

1200: Final hour before lunch and the time to beat is Leclerc’s 1:25.383.

1152: Alonso in the Aston Martin, that’s going to take a bit of getting used to, is up to third.

1147: Green light, and we’re back underway! Perez, Gasly, Fittipaldi, and Vesti all head straight back out on track.

1145: Still under red flag conditions here at Yas Marina, as Piastri’s stricken McLaren is recovered. Just over six hours remain in the 2022 season!

1130: We have our first red flag of the day! Oscar Piastri has broken down on track after Turn 7 – we can just about see the car from the media centre.

McLaren's Oscar Piastri broken down in testing in Abu Dhabi. Yas Marina, November 2022.
McLaren's Oscar Piastri broken down in testing in Abu Dhabi. Yas Marina, November 2022.

1115: While Sergio Perez leads the way on laps racked up so far with 48 tours of Yas Marina, the driver with the fewest laps under his belt today is Alex Albon – he’s done just nine laps so far.

George Russell hasn’t managed many more – he’s on 12 laps as he carries out Mercedes’ tyre testing programme this morning. Lewis Hamilton will take over for the afternoon.

1110: While Oscar Piastri may be getting most of the photographer’s attention today, as he makes his McLaren debut, but Lando Norris is out there as well! He’s currently P6, and just logged his 42nd lap of the day.

1105: Fernando Alonso is back out on track after his earlier break in the pits for what appeared to be setup changes. He’s racked up another nine laps since, taking him to a total of 29 in the first two hours.

Haas only have one car on track at the moment, as Nico Hulkenberg’s car broke down on track – however, he got it off the track and there was no stoppage.


1055: A very steady period, plenty of laps being put up with very little in the way of drama.

Charles Leclerc remains at the top with a 1:25.674, four-tenths clear of Ferrari teammate Robert Shwartzman in the other F1-75.

1030: 12th place on the timesheets, with 22 laps on the board – Jack Doohan is enjoying his Young Driver outing with Alpine so far this morning.

Alpine's Jack Doohan at the Abu Dhabi test. Yas Marina, November 2022.
Alpine’s Jack Doohan at the Abu Dhabi test. Yas Marina, November 2022.

1015: 20 laps on the board for Fernando Alonso in his unbranded Aston Martin so far, but looks like his running is over for the time being.

Why? This is why…

Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso at the 2022 Abu Dhabi test. Yas Marina, November 2022.
Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso at the 2022 Abu Dhabi test. Yas Marina, November 2022.



McLaren's Oscar Piastri in the pits at Abu Dhabi testing. Yas Marina, November 2022.
McLaren’s Oscar Piastri in the pits at Abu Dhabi testing. Yas Marina, November 2022.

0945: Liam Lawson is the latest to have a spin – around he goes at Turn 5, but continues without incident.

All very steady out on track so far, with a surprising amount of laps already. Leading the way in terms of mileage is McLaren newbie Oscar Piastri – he’s done 19 laps so far, while Perez and Vesti are each on 17.

0935: Robert Shwartzman has spun at Turn 16, and continued.

Alonso’s also gone off at Turn 13, but continued without issue.



0910: A quick spin for Nyck de Vries down at Turn 5, but he’s kept it running and off he goes again.

0910: A nice busy start to proceedings here, as everyone bar Verstappen, Stroll, Albon, Hamilton, and Sainz has put in at least one lap in the first few minutes.

It’s Perez at the top early on, he’s already on to his 10th lap of the day.

0900: Lights go green, and we’re underway in Abu Dhabi for the final day of track action!

0855: The timing screens in the media centre have sprung into life, and we have a definite plan of action for today! 24 drivers are expected to hit the track over the course of the next nine hours. Here’s the plan for each team:

  • Red Bull – Verstappen/Perez (Tyres) / Lawson (Young Driver)
  • Ferrari – Leclerc/Sainz (Tyres) / Shwartzman (Young Driver)
  • McLaren – Norris (Tyres) / Piastri (Young Driver)
  • Alpine – Gasly (Tyres) / Doohan (Young Driver)
  • AlphaTauri – Tsunoda (Tyres) / De Vries (Young Driver)
  • Aston Martin – Alonso (Tyres) / Drugovich (Young Driver)
  • Haas – Hulkenberg (Tyres) / Fittipaldi (Young Driver)
  • Mercedes – Hamilton/Russell (Tyres) / Vesti (Young Driver)
  • Williams – Albon (Tyres) / Sargeant (Young Driver)
  • Alfa Romeo – Bottas (Tyres) / Pourchaire (Young Driver)

0850: The plan for today is to run from 9am until 6pm, with an unofficial lunch break between 1 and 2pm (all local time). Two tests are underway, Pirelli tyre testing, as well as a Young Driver Test.

To that end, every team will be running two cars today – one for each test.


0830:Β  The action for today starts at 9am local time (5am UK time) and runs through to 6pm.

0800:Β Good morning from the Yas Marina circuit! The F1 2022 season may be done and dusted but, before everyone in the F1 paddock can rest up and recharge the batteries for next season, we have one final test to follow in Abu Dhabi.

We’ll be here with you all day (or night depending on where you are reading from!) to bring you all the very latest, with Thomas Maher reporting in from the track. Make sure you also give him a follow on Twitter (whilst it still exists) here – @thomasmaheronf1