Hamilton tops disrupted final session

By on Saturday, July 9, 2016
Mercedes AMG Petronas

Mercedes AMG Petronas

Lewis Hamilton stayed on top as he completed a clean sweep of sessions by finishing quickest during final practice on Saturday morning.

Following a quiet opening half an hour, after light rain left the circuit damp, Hamilton moved to the front with a 1:31.234, 0.097s quicker than team-mate Nico Rosberg.

The session was then halted for over 15 minutes when Marcus Ericsson suffered a high-speed off when he lost control of his Sauber C35-Ferrari on the exit of Stowe.

Ericsson slammed into the barriers on the inside of the corner and caused heavy damage to his car, with the steering wheel falling off in the process.

Ericsson was able to walk away from the wreckage of his car but the session was red-flagged while repairs to the barrier took place.

The session was resumed for the final five minutes of the session and both Hamilton and Rosberg went faster, with the Briton ending with a 1:30.904, 0.063s quicker than his team-mate.

Red Bull once again emerged as Mercedes’ closest challenger, with Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen third and fourth.

Ferrari endured a difficult session as Sebastian Vettel placed fifth with Kimi Räikkönen in ninth.

Vettel expressed his frustration as he crossed the line, informing his team that he suspected he had a gearbox problem, which could lead to a grid penalty if his suspicions are proved correct.

Vatteri Bottas was sixth for Williams, seven-tenths adrift of Vettel, ahead of McLaren’s Fernando Alonso and Force India’s Nico Hülkenberg.

Carlos Sainz Jr. was the lead Toro Rosso driver in 10th, ahead of Haas pair Esteban Gutiérrez and Romain Grosjean, who were split by McLaren’s Jenson Button.

Sergio Pérez was 14th, in front of Felipe Massa, Daniil Kvyat and Felipe Nasr, who suffered a spin under braking for Club.

Renault’s Jolyon Palmer and Kevin Magnussen were 18th and 19th, ahead of Rio Haryanto, Ericsson and Pascal Wehrlein.

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