F1 Testing: Bottas sets searing pace as Ferrari hit trouble on third morning

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

It was a tale of two mornings for Mercedes and Ferrari on the final day of the first Formula 1 test in Barcelona.

At the front, Valtteri Bottas would beat the fastest time set by Sebastian Vettel during the whole of pre-season last year with an impressive 1m15.732s on the C5 Pirelli tyres.

That time is also only three-tenths off the pole time and lap record around the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, which the Finn set in qualifying for last year's Spanish Grand Prix.

At the other end of the scale, Sebastian Vettel's morning was ended by an engine issue just an hour and a half in, with the Scuderia hoping to get the SF1000 back out on track in the afternoon.

A second red flag was also caused by Nicholas Latifi in the Williams, who lost drive on the main straight, but a quick reset saw the Canadian back out on track soon after.

The busiest driver in the first four hours was Max Verstappen on his half-day in the Red Bull, racking up 86 laps.

His focus remained on longer runs and lap times were comparable to Mercedes' race simulations from Thursday as he ended his day fifth fastest, two seconds off Bottas but on the C2 Pirelli rubber. 

Esteban Ocon made up for Renault's poor day distance-wise on Thursday with 76 laps in the Renault S20. The Frenchman was also second fastest overall but 1.4s slower than Bottas on the C4 compound.

Lance Stroll kept Racing Point's strong first test going in third, with Daniil Kvyat doing likewise for AlphaTauri in fourth.

Antonio Giovinazzi was sixth in the Alfa Romeo ahead of Carlos Sainz for McLaren in seventh.

Romain Grosjean was back on track after his spin late on Thursday and claimed eighth in the Haas, ahead of Vettel's stricken Ferrari in ninth.

Finally, F1's only rookie for 2020, Latifi, rounded out the top 10 in the Williams.

Full times and lap counts from the final morning of testing this week can be seen below: