FP3: Leclerc confirms Ferrari advantage

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Mexico, Autódromo Hermanos Rodriguezmx

Charles Leclerc confirmed that Ferrari is the team to beat for qualifying at Mexico, as he topped the final practice session. He was only just faster than teammate Sebastian Vettel, followed by both Mercedes drivers.

Just like on Friday, the night before had brought plenty of rain, resulting in a humid track at the start of the session. The first 45 minutes of the session, therefore, saw only limited running, with drivers doing some system checks on intermediate tyres and get a feel for the conditions - again.

15 minutes from the end, many drivers switched to dry tyres to see how today's car settings worked out for qualifying later in the day.

Leclerc was fastest without trouble, though only 0.027s quicker than Vettel. The Mercedes drivers ended up third and fourth as Carlos Sainz impressed to go fifth fastest, despite limited running and a disappointing Friday. He was helped by an Alfa Romeo holding up Max Verstappen on a quick run. The Red Bull driver, therefore, had to settle for 6th.

Gasly held hopes up for Toro Rosso by going 7th fastest, topping Albon, Norris and Perez as they completed the top 10.

By then, Renault was already out of contention, as pollution in one of the cooling systems was found. The problem was found ahead of the session on Ricciardo's car, while Hulkenberg was eventually also sidelined midway through FP3 as the team opted to clean up both cars thoroughly ahead of qualifying.

Results

Pos.No.DriverCarTimeGapLaps
116Charles LeclercFerrari1:16.145-14
25Sebastian VettelFerrari1:16.172+0.027s11
377Valtteri BottasMercedes AMG1:16.259+0.114s18
444Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG1:16.381+0.236s16
555Carlos SainzMcLaren Renault1:16.638+0.493s14
633Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing Honda1:16.903+0.758s12
710Pierre GaslyScuderia Toro Rosso Honda1:17.090+0.945s10
823Alexander AlbonRed Bull Racing Honda1:17.094+0.949s19
94Lando NorrisMcLaren Renault1:17.146+1.001s11
1011Sergio PerezRacing Point BWT Mercedes1:17.207+1.062s10
1126Daniil KvyatScuderia Toro Rosso Honda1:17.529+1.384s14
127Kimi RäikkönenAlfa Romeo Racing Ferrari1:17.740+1.595s19
1318Lance StrollRacing Point BWT Mercedes1:17.866+1.721s8
1499Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo Racing Ferrari1:17.881+1.736s8
1520Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari1:18.132+1.987s12
168Romain GrosjeanHaas Ferrari1:18.527+2.382s14
1763George RussellWilliams Mercedes1:20.965+4.820s13
1888Robert KubicaWilliams Mercedes1:22.002+5.857s13
1927Nico HulkenbergRenault--1