Max Verstappen ensured Red Bull completed a practice sweep at the Mexican Grand Prix but Ferrari and Mercedes are back in contention on a much cooler Saturday.
Damp conditions from overnight rain at the start of the session meant the drivers stayed in the garage for the opening 30 minutes with the track too wet for slicks and too dry for intermediates.
It would be Fernando Alonso who broke the silence setting the first lap time on the slicks with the rest of the field heading out for qualifying simulations.
After struggling in the heat on Friday, Sebastian Vettel immediately used the straight line speed of the Ferrari to go top of the timesheets.
Verstappen would then look to respond with his first timed lap but a hydraulics problem for Valtteri Bottas in the stadium section would see the Virtual Safety Car deployed to recover his Mercedes.
When the track went green, Charles Leclerc set an impressive time to go fastest in the Sauber and initially, Mercedes and Ferrari struggled to beat the Monegasque.
Verstappen then restored order by going 0.775s clear in P1 with a 1m16.284s, a time that would go unbeaten in the final flurry of laps.
Something resembling a normal order was then established as Lewis Hamilton improved to finish second, a quarter of a second behind the Red Bull and just three-hundredths clear of Vettel in third.
Their revival thanks largely to the much cooler conditions in Mexico City under very overcast skies and a threat of thunderstorms for qualifying later.
Both Red Bulls weren't completely trouble-free either with both Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo, who was fourth after only completing one timed lap which was disrupted in the final sector, reporting battery problems with the ERS not charging.
Leclerc's time kept him at the head of the midfield in sixth with Carlos Sainz also continuing Renault's strong pace in seventh. Pierre Gasly was eighth for Toro Rosso with Marcus Ericsson and Nico Hulkenberg completing the top 10.
The full finishing order from Practice 3 can be seen below:
Lewis Hamilton will finish his F1 career
Mercedes' Toto Wolff hints at Red Bull t
Daniel Ricciardo joining Renault a year
McLaren & Williams failing because of th
Sergio Perez reveals why he snubbed oppo
Stefano Domenicali linked with Ferrari r
Mercedes boss recalls 'amazing' first me
Max Verstappen now faster than Daniel Ri
Pirelli unfazed by 2021 F1 uncertainty b
McLaren taking measures to improve relia
Esteban Ocon issue simple 2020 F1 ultima
Toro Rosso's 2019 car the first to pass
Max Verstappen enjoys 'constructive' day
McLaren sure Fernando Alonso exit won't
Sergio Perez: Racing Point the best team
Haas still has to 'earn the respect' of
Carlos Sainz already looking for long-te
Formula 1 star Pierre Gasly to partner L
Vietnam's F1 circuit developed using fir
Hockenheim & Monza proved 'things weren'
Honda defiant over claims of setbacks wi
Daniel Ricciardo will boost Renault but
Mick Schumacher knows rushing to F1 woul
Nico Rosberg names one quality Hamilton
McLaren appoint ex-Porsche WEC chief And
Williams: Robert Kubica a 'proper driver
Canadian GP promoter excited by Stroll/P
Ross Brawn: McLaren & Williams 'great te
Michael Schumacher pushed Mercedes to go
Esteban Ocon tips Racing Point to close
Mattia Binotto must deliver championship
Toro Rosso's Franz Tost has simple cure
UPDATED: Pneumonia not the cause for Nik
Sauber set their target after 'pushing l
Romain Grosjean: Haas 'scaring' Renault
Charles Leclerc a future star but 2019 n
Is the opposition to Hamilton/Schumacher
Sebastian Vettel plays down loss of deve
Charles Leclerc responds to Hamilton nam
Honda bringing Red Bull 'in the region'
Renault obliged to prevent Daniel Riccia
Ferrari confirm Maurizio Arrivabene's de
Valtteri Bottas sees positive outlook fo
Haas wary of 2019 F1 regulations but Wil
Ross Brawn admits growing 'impatience' a
Mercedes hoping potential to match Ferra
Sauber considering shakedown of 2019 car
McLaren sure Liberty will address rise o
Arrivabene out, Binotto promoted to team
Niki Lauda back in hospital after contra
Honda facing two significant problems ah
Williams chief Lowe reveals Ross Brawn's
Mercedes tells Valtteri Bottas what is r
Honda sees great benefit from increased
Lawrence Stroll reveals main reason for
Robert Kubica admits saying no to Ferrar
Nico Hulkenberg: The key area Ricciardo
Kimi Raikkonen not making Sauber predict
Lewis Hamilton never asked for Sochi tea
George Russell: The McLaren decision tha
Jean-Eric Vergne offers his prediction o
McLaren call on Liberty to ignore opposi
Daniel Ricciardo: Verstappen set for 'gr
Michael Schumacher a 'founding father' o
McLaren won't jump to early conclusions
Robert Kubica puts expectations in check
Michael Schumacher's ex-manager explains
Barrichello: The trait Charles Leclerc m
Vasseur: A 'spiral' of events attracted
Michael Schumacher's family reassure fan
Wolff: How 2016 tension led to current H
Kevin Magnussen considers Grosjean his f
Five things to get excited about in F1 2
Kimi Raikkonen sure Ferrari will achieve
McLaren hoping to secure arrival of key
Toro Rosso's eye-watering cost of crash
Daniel Ricciardo reveals Mercedes talks
Charles Leclerc admits one thing stopped
Fernando Alonso: Why Schumacher was my g
Hamilton showed an ability in 2018 only
Verstappen: The three words Ocon said af
Mercedes/Ferrari relationship 'difficult
Red Bull: Developing Honda relationship
Watching Bottas give up victory in Sochi
Racing Point reveal the biggest challeng
Red Bull admit Verstappen was 'probably'
Russell can make same impact as Leclerc
Verstappen digs at Hamilton: It's very e
Mercedes respond after more claims of an
Renault wants to win in F1 but 'at a rea
Brown expects continued McLaren support
Ocon satisfied he met Mercedes goals for
Verstappen lauds 'tough' father Jos for
Vettel calls for Ferrari team effort to
Webber warns Ricciardo: Red Bull could b
Wolff admits dismay upon hearing of Hami
Red Bull would consider Aston Martin/Le
Not even triple the budget could have fi
Mercedes: Ocon return a bigger priority
Ricciardo 'didn't care' about Verstappen