Formula 1

FP3: Bottas leads Hamilton and Perez as Verstappen spins in final practice session in Hungary

The clouds above the Hungaroring loomed thick, grey and heavy for FP3 – but the rain held off as Mercedes sealed another 1-2 in the final practice session for the Hungarian Grand Prix, as Red Bull struggled to get to grips with their car.

Valtteri Bottas led team mate Lewis Hamilton in the time sheets, with the Finn’s blistering time of 1m15.437s set after the halfway point on soft tyres – which every driver used to set their fastest lap. Bottas was just 0.042s quicker than Hamilton by the end of the hour as the Silver Arrows made it a second 1-2 of the weekend having topped FP1 in front of the Racing Points.

The Racing Points were impressive again in this session as Perez was just 0.161s off Hamilton after a superb lap, with team mate Lance Stroll fifth – in a top five split by 0.596s – behind a much-improved Ferrari of Charles Leclerc in P4.

The Red Bull duo continued in relatively anonymous form as Max Verstappen finished sixth. His RB16 was noticeably skittish at points, and he could not prevent a spin at Turn 12 early in the session. His team mate Alex Albon was 12th overall, as the two drivers struggled to get to grips with a car they called “unpredictable” after Friday’s running.

FORMULA 1 ARAMCO MAGYAR NAGYDÍJ 2020

Practice 3 results

POSITION TIME
1  Valtteri BOTTAS Mercedes 1:15.437
2  Lewis HAMILTON Mercedes +0.042s
3  Sergio PEREZ Racing Point +0.161s
4  Charles LECLERC Ferrari +0.344s
5  Lance STROLL Racing Point +0.596s

McLaren were downplaying their expectations for the weekend after Friday practice and, while they couldn’t match Racing Point in Saturday’s first session, the Woking team finished seventh with Lando Norris (0.756s off Hamilton) and Carlos Sainz 11th.

Sebastian Vettel was the last driver within a second of Lewis Hamilton, but eighth overall having topped the wet FP2 session on Friday. He was just ahead of ninth-place Pierre Gasly of AlphaTauri, whose team mate Daniil Kvyat was down in P17.

Daniel Ricciardo scraped into the top-10 with a late effort, his team mate Esteban Ocon 13th at the flag with Williams’ George Russell just behind in an impressive P14.

Nicholas Latifi finished last and spun late on at Turn 12, a corner that caught many out during the session. He was just behind 19th-place Kimi Raikkonen, who wasted no time in getting out on track and broke the early silence with a flurry of flying laps.

The field watched Alfa Romeo’s veteran kick up wisps of white cement dust, placed to soak up the oil from Turns 1-3 from a fiery F3 incident earlier in the day courtesy of Liam Lawson’s Hitech car.

Soon however, they may have more than cement dust to worry about as those dark skies look like they could unleash plenty of rain over the Hungaroring for qualifying on Saturday afternoon. To find out if the drivers are bolting on wet tyres for qualifying for the second race running, join us here on F1.com for live coverage of the session this afternoon.

The deadline for F1 Fantasy hits when qualifying begins for the Hungarian Grand Prix. Change your team or sign up for F1 Fantasy here.

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