A sure-footed Mark Webber has emerged on top of the timesheets in a shortened final practice session at the Canadian Grand Prix.
And with more rain set to hit the Circuit de Gilles Villeneuve this afternoon, the odds of Red Bull Racing springing a surprise in qualifying have dramatically shortened.
First thing’s first, and the field had to navigate its way through a frantic final practice, which was delayed and ultimately reduced to thirty minutes while marshals were held up repairing a dislodged crash barrier section at Turn 11.
With a damp track surface again greeting the field, many of the runners opted for some short runs on intermediate tyres, while a few of the major players held out until the final minutes of play, at which point the circuit was dry enough for some last-minute slick-tyre running.
Webber ultimately prevailed in this last-minute dash on Super Soft rubber, posting easily the session’s best effort on his final lap to go atop the timesheets.
The impressive Adrian Sutil vaulted himself to second-quickest in his Force India, ahead of works Mercedes runner Lewis Hamilton, who was just under half a second behind in third place.
Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel completed the top-five positions, ahead of Monaco winner Nico Rosberg, who is aiming for his fourth pole position on the trot this afternoon.
After his Friday afternoon dramas, Paul di Resta was seventh-quickest in the second Force India, leaving Felipe Massa, Jenson Button and Kimi Räikkönen to orund out the top-ten.
The order further down the timesheets was rather more mixed up, as a combination of incorrect dry-weather tyre selection and traffic conspired to bury a few rather more fancied runners down the order. The likes of Sergio Pérez and Valtteri Bottas suffered in this regard, allowing F1 rookie Max Chilton into the giddy heights of fourteenth-fastest in his Marussia – the Englishman impressively finished ahead of both Saubers as well.
2013 Canadian Formula 1 Grand Prix – Free Practice 3 Session Times:
|1.||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing Renault RB9||1:17.895||7|
|2.||Adrian Sutil||Force India Mercedes VJM06||1:18.248||+ 0.353||8|
|3.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W04||1:18.732||+ 0.837||7|
|4.||Fernando Alonso||Scuderia Ferrari F138||1:18.977||+ 1.082||10|
|5.||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing Renault RB9||1:19.131||+ 1.236||6|
|6.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W04||1:19.457||+ 1.562||7|
|7.||Paul di Resta||Force India Mercedes VJM06||1:19.496||+ 1.601||6|
|8.||Felipe Massa||Scuderia Ferrari F138||1:19.750||+ 1.855||9|
|9.||Jenson Button||McLaren Mercedes MP4-28||1:19.790||+ 1.895||9|
|10.||Kimi Räikkönen||Lotus F1 Renault E21||1:20.316||+ 2.421||8|
|11.||Romain Grosjean||Lotus F1 Renault E21||1:20.596||+ 2.701||9|
|12.||Pastor Maldonado||Williams Renault FW35||1:21.035||+ 3.140||12|
|13.||Daniel Ricciardo||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR8||1:21.364||+ 3.469||7|
|14.||Max Chilton||Marussia Cosworth MR02||1:21.652||+ 3.757||9|
|15.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sauber Ferrari C32||1:22.021||+ 4.126||14|
|16.||Esteban Gutiérrez||Sauber Ferrari C32||1:22.720||+ 4.825||15|
|17.||Jean-Éric Vergne||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR8||1:23.058||+ 5.163||7|
|18.||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham Renault CT03||1:23.132||+ 5.237||14|
|19.||Sergio Pérez||McLaren Mercedes MP4-28||1:23.309||+ 5.414||6|
|20.||Charles Pic||Caterham Renault CT03||1:23.620||+ 5.725||12|
|21.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Renault FW35||1:24.314||+ 6.419||12|
|22.||Jules Bianchi||Marussia Cosworth MR02||1:26.195||+ 8.300||9|