FP3: Verstappen quickest in final practice


Max Verstappen set the pace in final practice for the Mexican GP as he edged ahead of title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel. 

On a chilly morning in Mexico City the drivers may have hoped for an uninterrupted FP3 but it was not to be as Pierre Gasly suffered an engine issue early on.

The Toro Rosso driver was forced to park his car on the side of the track while following the team’s commands to get it going again.

Unfortunately for the Frenchman he wasn’t able to and his session ended with just two laps to his name. He’s likely to add to his engine penalty.

With the yellow flags lifted the action heated up – as did the grass cutting.

Nico Hulkenberg, Carlos Sainz and Esteban Oconall had moments where they locked up and had to mow the lawn in order to save some rubber.

At the front of the timesheets Valtteri Bottas led the way midway through the session on the ultrasofts with a 1:17.537.

That put him 0.298s up on Hamilton while Verstappen – running the supersofts – was third fastest.

A second run on the ultrasoft tyres, the fastest of Pirelli’s rubbers, saw Verstappen pull ahead, clocking a 1:17.113 – a new lap record.

That secured him the morning’s P1 ahead of Hamilton, who was 0.075s down, while Vettel was third, 0.117s off the pace.

Bottas was dropped to fourth place, finishing the session ahead of Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen.

Sergio Perez was best of the rest at his home track while Ocon, Sainz and Hulkenberg completed the top ten.

1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:17.113
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:17.188 0.075
3 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:17.230 0.117
4 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:17.283 0.170
5 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 1:17.361 0.248
6 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:17.517 0.404
7 Sergio Perez Force India 1:18.040 0.927
8 Esteban Ocon Force India 1:18.165 1.052
9 Carlos Sainz Renault Sport 1:18.366 1.253
10 Nico Hulkenberg Renault Sport 1:18.380 1.267
11 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso 1:18.602 1.489
12 Felipe Massa Williams 1:18.801 1.688
13 Lance Stroll Williams 1:19.066 1.953
14 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:19.205 2.092
15 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1:19.331 2.218
16 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1:19.565 2.452
17 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:19.586 2.473
18 Pascal Wehrlein Sauber 1:19.826 2.713
19 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 1:20.030 2.917
20 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso