FP3: Alonso narrowly leads Verstappen and Perez in final Bahrain practice session
Fernando Alonso led the way in the final practice session of the Bahrain Grand Prix, as Aston Martin continued to impress, with the Spanish driver leading the way ahead of the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.
With FP3 held in unrepresentative conditions to what the drivers will face later in qualifying and in Sunday’s race, the track was clear in the early stages of the session, but with 50 minutes to go the lap times began to pour in with Lewis Hamilton narrowly ahead of the Ferraris.
However, it was Alonso – who also led the way in FP2 – who shone brightest in the Bahrain heat, setting a time of 1m 32.340s on a qualifying style-run on the soft compound tyre – leading Verstappen by 0.005s, and his team mate Perez by 0.106s.
FORMULA 1 GULF AIR BAHRAIN GRAND PRIX 2023
Practice 3 results
|1 Fernando Alonso ALO Aston Martin||1:32.340|
|2 Max Verstappen VER Red Bull Racing||+0.005s|
|3 Sergio Perez PER Red Bull Racing||+0.106s|
|4 Lewis Hamilton HAM Mercedes||+0.215s|
|5 Charles Leclerc LEC Ferrari||+0.284s|
Hamilton and his Mercedes team mate George Russell – running different rear wings as the Silver Arrows continue to experiment with set-ups – finished fourth and sixth, respectively.
Lance Stroll, in the other Aston Martin, continued his return from wrist surgery, netting seventh, with Charles Leclerc fifth fastest, ahead of his team mate Carlos Sainz in eighth.
Oscar Piastri was the lead McLaren in FP3, as the Australian driver finished in ninth, ahead of the Alpine pair of Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon, in 10th and 11th respectively.
Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu was 12th, ahead of the other McLaren of Lando Norris down in 13th, with the Haas pair of Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg in 14th and 15th respectively just behind.
Yuki Tsunoda was the lead AlphaTauri in the session in 16th, ahead of Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas in 17th, and Williams duo Logan Sargeant and Alex Albon, in 18th and 19th respectively, with AlphaTauri's Nyck de Vries down in last place.
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