F1 – Bottas makes it a clean sweep in practice for Portuguese Grand Prix

F1 – 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix – FP3

Valtteri Bottas went quickest in final practice for the Portuguese Grand Prix, edging Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton by just under three hundredths of a second. The Finnish driver’s effort completed a hat-trick of fastest practice times at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve. 

Mercedes’ drivers concentrated on running Pirelli’s red-banded soft tyres and across the session they traded quickest times before Bottas upped his pace with a little over 20 minutes left in the session and set a new target of 1:16.654. Hamilton might have gone quicker but the championship leader lost control of his Mercedes in Turn 8 and briefly went off track. 

And as the session then gave way to longer runs on soft tyres, Bottas’ time remained the benchmark until the end of running. 

Third place on the timesheet went to Max Verstappen. The Red Bull driver finished the hour just 0.158s behind the Bottas, but unlike the Mercedes pair the Dutchman set his best lap on the medium compound tyre.

Behind the top three, AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly bounced back from the car fire that ended his Friday running early in the second practice session by claiming fourth place with a lap of 1:16.930, just 0.276 off Bottas’ P1 time. 

Alexander Albon took fifth in the second Red Bull car, two tenths off team-mate Verstappen, while Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finished sixth ahead of the McLaren’s Carlos Sainz, Racing Point’s Sergio Pérez and the second McLaren of Lando Norris. The top 10 order was completed by Renault’s Esteban Ocon.

In the other Ferrari Sebastian Vettel, who finished in P11, reported a loose drain cover in Turn 14 cover in the final minutes of the session and the session was soon red-flagged. With little time left on the clock the decision was taken not to re-start the session. 

2020 FIA Formula 1 Portuguese Grand Prix – Free Practice 3
1 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:16.654 27 218.524
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:16.680 0.026 23 218.450
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Honda 1:16.812 0.158 21 218.075
4 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri/Honda 1:16.930 0.276 24 217.740
5 Alexander Albon Red Bull/Honda 1:17.117 0.463 25 217.212
6 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:17.229 0.575 20 216.897
7 Carlos Sainz McLaren/Renault 1:17.238 0.584 24 216.872
8 Sergio Pérez Racing Point/Mercedes 1:17.297 0.643 17 216.706
9 Lando Norris McLaren/Renault 1:17.478 0.824 22 216.200
10 Esteban Ocon Renault 1:17.666 1.012 20 215.677
11 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:17.685 1.031 24 215.624
12 Daniil Kvyat AlphaTauri/Honda 1:17.720 1.066 29 215.527
13 Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 1:17.922 1.268 20 214.968
14 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:17.935 1.281 13 214.932
15 George Russell Williams/Mercedes 1:18.032 1.378 20 214.665
16 Lance Stroll Racing Point/Mercedes 1:18.100 1.446 17 214.478
17 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 1:18.201 1.547 20 214.201
18 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 1:18.287 1.633 13 213.966
19 Nicholas Latifi Williams/Mercedes 1:18.397 1.743 20 213.666
20 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1:18.454 1.800 19 213.51

Source : Fia