Following Ferrari's strong showing on home turf at Monza yesterday, Max Verstappen bounced back in the final practice to lead Charles Leclerc with a benchmark of 1m21.252s. F1Technical's Balázs Szabó reports from the Monza paddock.
Championship leader Verstappen led the opening part of the session on Pirelli's medium compound before setting the quickest time of the weekend with a 1m21.252s to go over three tenths of a second faster than Ferrari driver Leclerc. The Monegasque racer appeared to be fast on low fuel, but could not get the best out of his red-walled soft tyres after making a mistake on his first qualifying simulation attempt.
Carlos Sainz topped Free Practice 2 yesterday, but he could not go better than third with his best lap slower than what Verstappen managed on the medium compound. Red Bull Racing's Mexican racer Sergio Perez was significantly slower than his team mate, but it was still enough for P4 given his car's dominance at the high-speed circuit of Monza.
Mercedes drivers continued to struggle for pace with George Russell finishing the session in P7, over a second adrift of Verstappen's benchmark. His team mate Lewis Hamilton, who has scored five wins at the Italian Grand Prix so far, ended up a further three places behind.
Williams repeated its impressive form from yesterday with Nicholas Latifi taking 13th ahead of Nyck de Vries, who stepped in to substitue for Alexander Albon, who is forced to miss the Italian Grand Prix after having been diagnosed with appendicitis.
The big disappointment was the duo of the Haas and the Aston Martin teams. The American outfit continued to have reliability issues in the final practice with Mick Schumacher restricted to just seven laps after missing Free Practice 1 completely and the second half of the second session as well.
The German took 19th, but his team mate Kevin Magnussen also only managed a lap time that saw him end just a single position higher up on the order.
The Haas duo was sandwiched in between the twoAston Martin drivers with Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll taking 17th and 20th respectively.
|1||1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing Rbpt||1:21.252||19|
|3||11||Sergio Perez||Red Bull Racing Rbpt||1:21.848||+0.596s||25|
|5||14||Fernando Alonso||Alpine Renault||1:22.306||+1.054s||17|
|6||4||Lando Norris||Mclaren Mercedes||1:22.319||+1.067s||18|
|8||22||Yuki Tsunoda||Alphatauri Rbpt||1:22.430||+1.178s||27|
|9||31||Esteban Ocon||Alpine Renault||1:22.506||+1.254s||17|
|11||24||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||1:22.657||+1.405s||13|
|12||10||Pierre Gasly||Alphatauri Rbpt||1:22.755||+1.503s||21|
|13||6||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Mercedes||1:22.776||+1.524s||18|
|14||45||Nyck De Vries||Williams Mercedes||1:22.869||+1.617s||21|
|15||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Mclaren Mercedes||1:22.871||+1.619s||19|
|16||77||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||1:22.950||+1.698s||26|
|17||5||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin Aramco Mercedes||1:23.104||+1.852s||20|
|18||20||Kevin Magnussen||Haas Ferrari||1:23.203||+1.951s||16|
|19||47||Mick Schumacher||Haas Ferrari||1:23.392||+2.140s||7|
|20||18||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin Aramco Mercedes||1:23.739||+2.487s||16|