Red Bull’s Max Verstappen set the fastest time in the final practice session for the Mexican Grand Prix, 0.094s ahead of Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes.
In a frantic flurry of supersoft-tyre runs at the end of the session, Verstappen unleashed 1m19.137s, just under a tenth faster than Hamilton.
It was the second time he'd topped this session in a row, after also doing so in Austin.
Daniel Ricciardo was third fastest for Red Bull, with points leader Nico Rosberg fourth for Mercedes, almost half a second off the pace.
Story of the session
In sunny conditions, Mercedes ran on fresh softs initially. "Steering feels a little bit left-hand down," reported Hamilton before setting the pace on 1m20.158s, four tenths up on Rosberg's 1m20.566s.
Hamilton worked down to a 1m19.721s on softs as the track evolved, as Rosberg improved to 1m20.242s – still over half a second off.
Verstappen, on softs, grabbed second from Vettel with 1m19.959s, under a quarter of a second off Hamilton's pace. Ricciardo then topped that on his second flying lap on softs, with a 1m19.950s that was good for second, 0.229s down.
Williams's Felipe Massa, who earlier suffered a grassy off at Turn 1, leapt to P4 on his second push lap on supersofts to lap in 1m19.997s.
Verstappen then raised the bar, his 1m19.137s good for P1, with Bottas jumping to third on 1m19.811s.
Ricciardo went P2 on 1m19.444s, hitting traffic – mainly Renault's Kevin Magnussen – at the end of his lap, and lapping three tenths off his teammate. Ricciardo then improved to 1m19.375s on his second push lap.
Hamilton had to abort his first lap on supersofts, as did Vettel after running wide. On his second effort, Hamilton went P2 on 1m19.231s, 0.094s off Verstappen.
Rosberg went off at Turn 12 on his first supersoft run, but recovered to fourth on his second push lap, a 1m19.618s. Bottas's time was good for fifth.
Raikkonen also went off at Turn 12 and could only manage 11th, but a second attempt elevated him to seventh, just behind Vettel.
Massa slipped to eighth, ahead of the Force India of Nico Hulkenberg. Carlos Sainz was 10th for Toro Rosso, ahead of the second Force India of Sergio Perez.
Haas F1 suffered another troubled session, with Esteban Gutierrez in 17th and Romain Grosjean 19th.
"I cannot get the front tyres to work," said Grosjean, who spun near the end of the session. "It's a total disaster, I don't know what to do."
Gutierrez added: "I don't know what's going on, the front tyres are nowhere."
Kevin Magnussen was 18th for Renault, with the Manors of Pascal Wehrlein and Esteban Ocon in 20th and 21st respectively. Sauber's Felipe Nasr was last.
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||TAG||16||1'19.137|
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull||TAG||17||1'19.370||0.233||0.139|
|9||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India||Mercedes||21||1'20.255||1.118||0.258|
|10||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso||Ferrari||22||1'20.325||1.188||0.070|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India||Mercedes||20||1'20.472||1.335||0.147|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||Ferrari||20||1'20.586||1.449||0.114|