Hungaroring FP3: Hamilton edges Rosberg

Lewis Hamilton tops in FP3

Lewis Hamilton tops in FP3

With the sun shining down through rain laden clouds over Hungaroring, the Silver Arrows pair were once again easily the quickest in the Final Free Practice session of the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend with Lewis Hamilton only fractionally faster than Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, ahead of Qualifying.

With track and ambient temperatures much cooler than on Friday, both Mercedes drivers pounded out more laps than their rivals in the 60 minutes session, with Hamilton edging a better lap than Rosberg by a mere 0.047 of a second to take top spot on the timing screens, thus setting the scene for what should be a mega shootout for pole between the pair.

Next best were the Red Bull duo, Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo in third and fourth respectively, with Valtteri Bottas fifth fastest suggesting that Williams may be ‘keeping their powder dry’ in the Free Practice sessions, although Felipe Massa was only 11th fastest.

Sebastian Vettel third fastest

Sebastian Vettel third fastest

Behind Bottas were the Ferrari pair, Fernando Alonso sixth on the timing sheets, a tad quicker than Kimi Raikkonen.

Kevin Magnussen was eighth in the McLaren ahead of the the Toro Rosso boys, Jean Eric Vergne ninth fastest and Daniil Kvyat rounding out the top ten.

Clearly, as has become the norm this season, Mercedes have at least a half second gap to their rivals, and the twisty shorter nature of the Hungaroring has done little, if anything at all, to narrow the gulf between the silver cars and the rest.

Perhaps the only glimmer of hope for Mercedes rivals was the possibility of rain, promised by the water heavy clouds floating lazily above Budapest. Teams may wish that the clouds dump their load in Qualifying and, better still, also in the race to maybe level the playing field a little, or perhaps not, such is the dominance of the three pointed star currently in F1. (GP247)

Hungarian Grand Prix, Free Practice 3 – Saturday, 26 July 2014
Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:24.048 21
2 6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:24.095 0.047 24
3 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:24.455 0.407 16
4 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:24.678 0.630 15
5 77 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1:24.685 0.637 21
6 14 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:24.769 0.721 11
7 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1:24.818 0.770 19
8 20 Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.867 0.819 21
9 25 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Renault 1:25.162 1.114 17
10 26 Daniil Kvyat STR-Renault 1:25.170 1.122 19
11 19 Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1:25.231 1.183 18
12 22 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:25.468 1.420 14
13 13 Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1:25.829 1.781 22
14 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:25.859 1.811 19
15 99 Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1:25.934 1.886 21
16 21 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.023 1.975 23
17 27 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:26.035 1.987 19
18 11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1:26.142 2.094 17
19 10 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1:27.560 3.512 23
20 4 Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1:28.083 4.035 17
21 9 Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1:28.605 4.557 22
22 17 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1:28.821 4.773 14