Singapore GP: Vettel tops final practice, Mercedes off the pace

Sebastian Vettel set the pace in final practice for the Singapore Grand Prix, as the Mercedes drivers were way off the pace ahead of qualifying.

Vettel used the super-soft tyres to post a 1:45.682, the best time of the weekend and finish in front of Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen, who was nearly half a second slower than the German.

Red Bull duo Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo had another strong session, finishing in third and fourth respectively.

The most surprising performance, however, came from Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton down in fifth over a full second off Vettel's pace.

Teammate Nico Rosberg finished in sixth in one of the dominant team's most subbed showings of the season.

Spaniard Fernando Alonso was seventh fastest for McLaren, ahead of compatriot and Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz.

Max Verstappen and Marcus Ericsson completed the top 10 for Toro Rosso and Sauber.

Manor's Alexander Rossi and Will Stevens were the first drivers to set a time, as they tried to make the most of the session following a lack of running in FP2 yesterday.

Kvyat returned to the top of the times quickly, however, before yellow flags appeared on track after Verstappen went off at Turn 5. The Toro Rosso driver managed to rejoin without any damage.

The Dutchman bounced back from the incident to go second quickest after the 10-minute mark, as Kvyat improved to a 1:47.968.

Most of the frontrunners waited for their rivals to clean the track before venturing out for their runs, with Rosberg slotting himself in third with his first timed lap of the session, set nearly 20 minutes after the start.

Hamilton took longer than his teammate to appear on the timesheets, the Briton going second quickest with his first run on softs after the 20-minute mark.

Ricciardo, Vettel and Raikkonen also failed to set a time in the first third on the session.

Vettel jumped to P1 with his first run on soft tyres, the Ferrari driver setting a new benchmark of 1:46.728, as Hamilton triggered a yellow-flag period when he went off at Turn 7.

McLaren's Jenson Button spent half the session in the garage, only setting a time after the halfway point.

The qualifying simulations with super-soft tyres kicked off with some 10 minutes to go, with Ricciardo taking first place but by less than four tenths from Vettel, who had set his earlier time on softs.

Raikkonen then set the quickest time of the weekend at that point, posting a 1:46.132 that was quickly bettered by Vettel, the first man to lap in the 1:45s all weekend.

1 Sebastian Vettel  Ferrari 1:45.682   12
2 Kimi Raikkonen  Ferrari 1:46.132 +0.450 12
3 Daniil Kvyat  Red Bull Racing 1:46.167 +0.485 19
4 Daniel Ricciardo  Red Bull Racing 1:46.359 +0.677 14
5 Lewis Hamilton  Mercedes 1:46.802 +1.120 15
6 Nico Rosberg  Mercedes 1:47.223 +1.541 16
7 Fernando Alonso  McLaren 1:47.237 +1.555 14
8 Carlos Sainz Jr.  Toro Rosso 1:47.301 +1.619 18
9 Max Verstappen  Toro Rosso 1:47.464 +1.782 17
10 Marcus Ericsson  Sauber 1:47.568 +1.886 20
11 Valtteri Bottas  Williams 1:47.587 +1.905 20
12 Nico Hulkenberg  Force India 1:47.640 +1.958 16
13 Jenson Button  McLaren 1:47.715 +2.033 14
14 Felipe Massa  Williams 1:47.733 +2.051 21
15 Pastor Maldonado  Team Lotus 1:47.817 +2.135 16
16 Sergio Perez  Force India 1:48.002 +2.320 15
17 Romain Grosjean  Team Lotus 1:48.116 +2.434 15
18 Felipe Nasr  Sauber 1:48.932 +3.250 20
19 Alexander Rossi  Manor 1:52.588 +6.906 26
20 Will Stevens  Manor 1:55.293 +9.611 22




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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Singapore GP
Sub-event Saturday practice
Track Singapore Street Circuit
Article type Practice report