Sebastian Vettel has ended the final practice session quickest on the time-sheets for Ferrari at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen splitting the Scuderia duo in second and Kimi Raikkonen completed the top three as both Mercedes and title-rivals Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg placed fourth and fifth respectively.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel has topped the final Free Practice 3 session of the year at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.
Vettel set the quick time of a 1:40.776 on the purple-branded Ultra-Softs and was 0.137 seconds clear of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen who was second and Kimi Raikkonen in the other Ferrari placed third and a further 0.224 seconds adrift of team-mate Vettel’s time.
Both Mercedes and title-rivals followed as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg ended the hour session in fourth and fifth respectively as both Silver Arrows conserved their engines ahead of qualifying coming up with Hamilton reporting to his team over the radio during the session that he suffered a sudden loss of power.
Both Mercedes drivers also reporting braking issues during the hour practice.
The other Red Bull RB12 of Daniel Ricciardo finished in sixth place and ahead of Force India pairing Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg who were seventh and eighth.
Valtteri Bottas placed ninth in his Mercedes-powered Williams and in-front of Haas F1 Team’s Esteban Gutierrez who completed the top ten.
The two McLaren-Honda’s of Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button were 11th and 13th in their Honda-powered MP4-31 racers and splitting the pairing was Renault’s Jolyon Palmer who was 12th.
Felipe Massa who like Button is competing in his final Grand Prix this weekend, ended the hour session placed 13th in his Williams and in-front of Haas F1 Team’s Romain Grosjean who was 14th with the latter continuing to struggle with the front of his VF-16.
Massa also brought out double-waved yellows as he took a spin at turn six but continued on.
Renault’s Kevin Magnussen placed 16th in his RS-16 and ahead of Manor’s Pascal Wehrlein who was 17th with the latter reporting vibrations earlier in the session.
Carlos Sainz had a difficult session in his Toro Rosso to take 18th with the Spaniard suffering a spin at turn 18 and in-front of Sauber’s Felipe Nasr who took 19th and Manor’s Esteban Ocon who finished 20th.
Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat and Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson finished the final practice of the year at the rear.
The Full 2016 Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Free Practice 3 Results Classification provided at the link: http://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2016/races/957/abu-dhabi/practice-3.html.
Written by Michael Terminello