Nico Rosberg has finished the final practice session for the Singapore Grand Prix just 0.059 seconds ahead of Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen.

Kimi Raikkonen was third for Ferrari although the Finn was half a second off Rosberg’s benchmark, Verstappen’s team mate Daniel Ricciardo managed a best time to see him finish fourth despite his lap being compromised by one of the Manors.

While Rosberg enjoyed a trouble free session, Lewis Hamilton struggled to keep his car on track in the other Mercedes. The championship leader struggled with his braking on two occasions at Turn 7, locking his front tyres and having to use the escape road.

The issues Hamilton experienced with his brakes occurred on both the super softs and the ultra-softs, meaning that he was unable to set a flying lap on the ultra-soft compound and finished the session in eighth position.

Red Bull began their session on the soft compound and spent 25 laps in total lapping the Marina Bay street circuit before making the switch to their qualifying simulation with just under 20minutes to go.

Mercedes ran a similar plan to Red Bull, although the Silver Arrows opted to run the super softs at the beginning of the session instead, while Ferrari spent the entire final practice on the ultra-softs.

Sebastian Vettel managed a best time of 1:45.104 which was good enough for fifth, two-tenths of a second ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg in sixth, although the time wasn’t as encouraging as he would of hoped as he was over seven-tenths slower than Rosberg.

Despite both drivers saying the updated aero package wasn’t much of an improvement, Toro Rosso again had both of their drivers in the top 10, with Daniil Kvyat leading the way in seventh just over a second off the pace, while Carlos Sainz finished in ninth ahead of Valtteri Bottas.

The session was briefly red flagged when Pascal Wehrlein spun his Manor and hit the rear on the barriers, shattering half of his rear wing. The German made it back to the pits but there was too much debris on the circuit for the session to continue.

Image via Mercedes AMG F1 Petronas

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Josh Kruse

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