Barcelona Day 3 round-up: Hamilton makes his mark with fastest time of weekend

F1

Lewis Hamilton clocked up the fastest time of the day, as well as the most laps, as the first pre-season test came to an end in Barcelona

Lewis Hamilton Mercedes F1 2022 pre-season test Barcelona

Hamilton set the fastest time of the week on the fastest day

Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton ended the Barcelona pre-season test with the fastest time and the most laps completed, as he and new team-mate George Russell clocked a 1-2 for the Silver Arrows on the final day.

The seven-time champion chalked up a 1min 19.138sec lap, the fastest time of the weekend, after spending the afternoon relentlessly setting quicker and quicker laps.

The track had been made wet artificially by a convoy of tankers distributing water, which Hamilton, Sergio Perez, Carlos Sainz and a number of others negotiated on wet and intermediate Pirellis, but the weather was fine enough that the track eventually dried and faster laps were set.

Carlos Sainz Ferrari F1 2022 Barcelona pre-season test

Ferrari has had a solid test, with fastest times and many laps completed

Ferrari

The time was just over a second off the fastest lap in last year’s Spanish Grand Prix, and around 2.4sec slower than Hamilton’s pole time. But with another test to go in Bahrain, there is further development to come, particularly as teams look to eliminate the porpoising evident as cars bounced down the main straight at high speeds.

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The Red Bulls ultimately weren’t quite in same orbit in terms of lap time as Mercedes. Perez’s 1min 19.556sec was good enough for third, whilst Verstappen was exactly two tenths further back, but testing has never been a reliable indicator of the true competitive order, with teams running individual programmes. The drivers completed 133 laps between them; short of the 160 achieved by Mercedes.

Sebastian Vettel was the cause of one of five red flags which came out in the morning, but before that he posted a time which would eventually leave him fifth in the running order – his time was a 1min 19.824sec. He completed 48 laps before his car caught fire on the track due to an oil leak. It wouldn’t reappear and Aston began packing up early.

Seven thousandths behind the German was Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. He managed 44 tours in a morning’s running. His team-mate Sainz did even better enjoying a highly productive afternoon of 92 laps, just 0.25sec behind.

Another with an impressive lap tally was Alex Albon. His Williams showed good reliability to match Hamilton in clocking 94 circuits with a final time of 1min 20.318sec, with team-mate Nicholas Latifi going 0.35sec slower.

Nikita Mazepin Haas pre-season test F1 2022 Barcelona

Mazepin – running in a plain white livery – only managed nine laps before a leak ended Haas’s day

Haas

Next was the McLaren pair: Daniel Ricciardo recorded a 1min 20.790sec and Lando Norris a 1min 20.827sec. Though perhaps showing a more subdued pace, a total of 85 and 52 laps respectively was impressive and Ricciardo made the most of the wet circuit; leaving the pitlane as soon as the afternoon session began.

A hydraulic issue caused a dramatic fire for Fernando Alonso during the stop-start morning session which ended after 14 tours of Circuit de Cataluyna. His time of 1min 21.242sec left him 12th at the end of the day and, like Aston Martin, the team lost the afternoon session.

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Guanyu Zhou was another with an action-packed morning. The Chinese driver went off early on, only to stop on the pit straight with an issue almost as soon as he went back out. A 1min 21.939sec was his best effort.

Pierre Gasly’s day was similar, as he also crashed during the morning before a mechanical issue left Yuki Tsunoda unable to have his turn in the afternoon. 1min 22.469sec meant 14th on the timesheets.

Nikita Mazepin’s position at Haas looks under threat after the team stripped its car of the branding from title sponsor Uralkali, which is owned by his Russian oligarch father. Team boss Guenther Steiner said that the decision was a mark of respect following the invasion of Ukraine. Mazepin only managed nine laps in the white-liveried car before a leak curtailed his and the team’s day. His best lap was 7sec slower than Hamilton’s.

Coming in a sorry last was Valtteri Bottas. At lunchtime, he said that the team needed more running after a difficult first two days. The Finn managed just 10 laps in the troublesome new Alfa Romeo and a time of 1min 30.433sec was all he mustered.

Position Driver Car Time Laps
1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1min 19.138sec 94
2. George Russell Mercedes 1min 19.233sec 66
3. Sergio Perez Red Bull 1min 19.556sec 74
4. Max Verstappen Red Bull 1min 19.756sec 59
5. Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 1min 19.824sec 48
6. Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1min 19.831sec 44
7. Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1min 20.072sec 92
8. Alex Albon Williams 1min 20.318sec 94
9. Nicholas Latifi Williams 1min 20.699sec 13
10. Daniel Riccardo McLaren 1min 20.790sec 86
11. Lando Norris McLaren 1min 20.827sec 52
12. Fernando Alonso Alpine 1min 21.242sec 12
13. Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo 1min 21.939sec 41
14. Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1min 22.469sec 40
15. Nikita Mazepin Haas 1min 26.229sec 9
16. Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1min 30.433sec 10