In a scorching hot practice session at the Singapore Grand Prix, Carlos Sainz continued to shine as he led a Ferrari clean sweep of Formula 1 practice sessions. Sainz’s blistering performance left his rivals trailing in his wake, with Mercedes‘ George Russell coming closest but still falling short by a mere 0.069 seconds. In this thrilling FP3 session, the stage was set for a showdown as teams pursued the perfect setup for the challenging Marina Bay Street Circuit.
Let’s delve into the exciting details of the practice session that saw Sainz claim the top spot, Russell’s valiant efforts, and other notable developments as the teams geared up for a weekend of intense racing action in the heart of Singapore.
Amid a series of qualifying simulations over the second half of the session, as the sun began to fall over the Marina Bay Street Circuit, Ferrari made a strategic decision to wait for the track temperature to drop slightly before sending both of their drivers out for their flying laps.
Sainz wasted no time in making his mark. His first push lap on the soft tires saw him clock a sensational 1 minute 32.065 seconds, earning him the top spot. As the session progressed, a flurry of qualifying simulations attempted to dethrone him, but Sainz’s time held firm.
Earlier in the session, Russell and his Mercedes had taken the initial lead, both drivers opting for soft tires in contrast to their rivals who began with the medium compound. Russell’s 1 minute 32.364 seconds lap briefly put him at the top, only to be edged out by Lando Norris in his McLaren with a 1 minute 32.303 seconds lap. However, Sainz and his Ferrari soon reasserted themselves at the forefront.
Despite a potential sector three yellow flag when Alex Albon went off at Turn 17, the track conditions favored the Ferraris as they navigated through the chicane unimpeded on their second flying laps.
Russell, determined to seize the top spot, managed to reclaim second place from Norris, while Sainz aimed to better his own time on his second run. However, an unexpected challenge arose when he found himself executing a 50-50 grind on the Turn 7 exit kerb, forcing him to abort his attempt. Charles Leclerc, Sainz’s teammate, also had to back out of a promising lap after posting the fastest first sector, denying Ferrari a potential practice 1-2 finish.
Ultimately, Norris finished the session in third place, Russell secured second, and Max Verstappen, in his Red Bull, made a late surge to capture fourth place with his final soft-tyre lap, fine-tuning his upshifts throughout the session.
Although the session saw its share of challenges and surprises, it set the stage for an exhilarating Singapore Grand Prix, promising fierce competition and unexpected twists as the drivers and teams sought the perfect setup for the challenging street circuit.
Further down the field, notable performances and struggles were observed, including Oscar Piastri’s seventh-place finish, Sergio Perez’s difficulties with car handling, and Lewis Hamilton’s position two-tenths behind Leclerc.
As the weekend unfolds, the Formula 1 world eagerly awaits the qualifying rounds and the race itself, all under the glittering lights of the Marina Bay Street Circuit, where every millisecond matters, and the competition is as intense as ever. Stay tuned for more updates and analysis as the Singapore Grand Prix action continues to heat up.