The final practice of the race weekend as well as of the season finished at Yas Marina. After leading on Friday the Mercedes drivers loses the rhythm and took just P2 and P3. Also inside the team there were some changes – the leader of FP1 and FP2 Valtteri Bottas gave pass to the teammate Lewis Hamilton.
Apparently Red Bull managed to improve some things in a car and pick optimal settings after yesterday’s sessions, at least for Max Verstappen. The Dutch finished practice in P1, while Alex Albon spent a lot of time in the pits since the team was working on his car. After coming back to the track, Alex couldn’t overtake Mercedes and remained in the 4th position.
During the session both Ferraris were very close to the rivals from Mercedes and Red Bull, but every time they passed them, the rivals passed them back. So the final results of the Ferrari teammates in FP3 are P5 (Vettel) and P6 (Leclerc), what means they are out of the top battle. As data showed, Ferrari cars loses time mainly on the last sector. But likely they have some mode for qualifying, which let them improve time.
As for predictions of the qualifying, it seems the main battle goes to Mercedes and Red Bull, specifically to Lewis and Max, because Valtteri Bottas will start the race from the back of the grid and pole position is frankly useless for him. Alex Albon obviously need to improve some things in the car in terms of balance and pace.
The full results of FP3: