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FP3 in Monaco: Ferrari and Red Bull fight for the top spot

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The third practice in Monaco ended with Sergio Perez in P1.

The start of the practice was slow, with mainly Williams, Haas and Aston Martin doing their laps in the first few minutes.

After the track slowly built up more grip, all teams slowly but surely dared to go out.

Red Bull or Ferrari?

All eyes were on the top two teams, Red Bull and Ferrari. So far, Ferrari looked better than the Austrian team in the tight corners and streets – Nevertheless, the team around Christian Horner has not lost hope for the qualifying.

All four drivers fought for the best set-up in FP3 to contest the qualifying well. As we know, a good position is the most crucial thing in Monaco – overtaking manoeuvres are complicated here.

Both teams were on the soft compound tyres at the beginning of the session. The first four places were hotly contested between the drivers. Qualifying should be exciting because even though the Ferrari looks strong, don’t forget the Red Bulls.

Just before half of the session was over, Sergio Perez and Charles Leclerc topped the standings with the same time.

Leclerc then went even faster and clocked a 1.12.885 – shortly after, he had a lockup in turn 1.

Sergio Perez had to return to the garage just under a quarter of an hour before the end after he touched the wall, and his suspension had to be checked.

Carlos Sainz stormed up the standings with a 1.12.846 – but will be investigated after the session as he apparently impeded Sebastian Vettel on a fast lap.

Towards the end of the session, both teams revved up everything they could in preparation for qualifying.

McLaren

After Daniel Ricciardo’s accident in FP2, McLaren had to break curfew to get their car running again for Saturday.

Norris also continued his winning streak from Friday. He expertly manoeuvred the McLaren through the narrow streets of Monaco and secured P6 with a 1m14.085 before grazing the wall and subsequently having to have his steering checked in the pits.

After getting back on track, Norris was just 0.341 seconds behind leader Charles Leclerc.

Best of the Rest?

Valtteri Bottas finally got to use his Alfa Romeo on Saturday – the MGU-K had put him out of action on Friday.

His former teammate Lewis Hamilton was more in the middle of the field, as was George Russell. They finished the session in P7 and P9.

In the meantime, Hamilton complained about the gap to the leader because he couldn’t estimate where exactly he had lost the time. Russell also complained about the suspension of his Mercedes when he went over the kerbs.

Yuki Tsunoda seemed comfortable in his AlphaTauri, setting a time of 1.13.916 in the interim, while Pierre Gasly even managed a better lap and briefly found himself back in P3 with a time of 1.13.2.

Kevin Magnussen was in the upper midfield with his times, so if he can make it to qualifying, another Q3 appearance could be in the cards for the Haas driver.

His teammate Mick Schumacher was just under four-tenths behind him but seemed much more comfortable in the car than before.

Günther Steiner told Sky Germany that he hopes both drivers make it into Q3 “even though luck plays a big role in Monaco“.

For Lance Stroll, practice was over after contact with the wall. He was in P17.

Final Standings

Some drivers will be investigated after the session, it remains to be seen if there will be penalties.

Feature Image Credit: Dan Istitene – via Getty Images

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