Formula One: Verstappen fastest in final practice at Canadian GP

Annette Crawford
June 13, 2018

Under-fire Dutchman Max Verstappen delivered a ideal riposte to his critics on Friday when he topped the times in both practice sessions for this weekend s Formula One Canadian Grand Prix.

Scorching the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with the fastest times of the day will have that effect on a driver.

Given his struggles to find a good balance since the start of Friday practice, Ricciardo feels he can take comfort in how he performed on Saturday afternoon.

While Gasly's Toro Rosso team-mate Brendon Hartley ended up 16th, he did record the fastest speed trap result with his Honda power unit propelling him to 328kph. Kimi Raikkonen was second fastest for Ferrari but the competitive picture was skewed by Mercedes opting against using Pirelli's fastest compound - the hyper-soft - on either vehicle across both practice sessions. But he was beaten to the punch by Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) and Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) as he has to settle for third, ahead of Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) and Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo.

"(We're) not yet there", said Vettel. "I just couldn't get the rhythm", he said. "And I think if I get a few more, I'll head-butt someone".

Fernando Alonso had led the session early on after being the first driver to post a representative time on the hypersoft rubber, but eventually slid to seventh.

"It was a good day", Verstappen said.

Ricciardo trails new championship leader Vettel by 37 points, having been 38 from the summit before the race when Hamilton was still on top.

All three have won two races so far this season.

When asked about the status of the component which failed in Monaco, he said: "I wouldn't describe it as's not happy!"

But Ricciardo, who will start sixth, believes Red Bull can fight for victory - which would be their third in seven races in 2018.

While an issue during the second session was initially thought to be MGU-K related, many still fearing that the Australian is on the verge of a grid penalty following the Monaco failure, it turned out to be an electrical issue related to the Renault engine update. "But we're going to get it later anyway, so that's all good". "It was especially nice on my last lap to see all the Canadian flags waving to me".

Romain Grosjean was unable to complete any laps in qualifying and will start in the back of the field, in 20th.

"We managed to get a few laps in at the end of FP3 and I did enough to feel what the auto was like".

Stroll touched a wall in the morning session, forcing a stop for repairs, but was back out for a full run in the afternoon. Sauber's Marcus Ericsson also had a spin that left him facing the wrong way on the track, but he straightened out and resumed.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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