Hamilton tops final pre-season test

© @LestweetsF1

© @LestweetsF1

Lewis Hamilton has topped the times on the final day of running before the Melbourne Grand Prix, setting a time 0.709s faster than his closest rival.

Hamilton lead Williams driver Valtteri Bottas as Fernando Alonso, Nico Hulkenberg and Jean-Eric Vergne completed the top five.

The day’s running saw eight red flag stoppages as teams attempted to find the last bits of information on the new cars.

The first red flag came out as Sebastian Vettel’s RB10 required extinguishing at turn 1, continuing Red Bull’s horror pre-season.

Romain Grosjean and Jenson Button brought out red flags less than an hour apart.

Grosjean would stop again unexpectedly an hour later and with 90 minutes left on the day’s running Nico Hulkenberg stopped at Turn 3.

Grosjean later spoke in a press conference and said crossing the finishing line in Australia is “optimism”.

Ten minutes later the session was stopped again when Fernando Alonso pulled off the track in his Ferrari in the lead-up to the back straight before Bottas coasted to a halt near the start-finish line.

Esteban Gutierrez and Sauber decided to join the party late and stopped at Turn 8 with only 15 minutes to go in the session.

Hamilton’s fastest time of 1m33.278s was just over a second slower than Nico Rosberg’s 2013 pole time at the Bahrain Grand Prix and, had it been set in 2013, would have placed Hamilton 9th on the grid.

Reigning champion Vettel saw an improvement in times toward the end of the session but was only able to finish in ninth position, over four seconds down on Hamilton’s benchmark.

The cars will now be packed up in preparation for the Australian Grand Prix in a fortnight.

Full times below






Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s