FP3: Rosberg narrowly pips Verstappen

Nico Rosberg was the driver to beat in Saturday's final practice in Budapest, a session in which Lewis Hamilton concentrated on race pace and Max Verstappen challenged.

On a hot morning in Hungary, where the track temperature started at 43'C and rose to the high 40s, Hamilton, Daniel Ricciardo and Rosberg all had a period at the top of the timesheets in the first half of the session.

However, it was Rosberg with a 1:20.547 who was able to hold onto it, 0.481s up on Ricciardo while Verstappen slotted into third place.

Rosberg put in two quick laps on his supersoft tyres to slide into P1 while Hamilton, who flat-spotted his front right, moved onto race simulation, which he missed out on that through his FP2 crash on Friday.

The final 30 minutes saw Ricciardo, on a new set of supersofts, close up on Rosberg to just 0.179s while Kimi Raikkonen took third off Verstappen. Sebastian Vettel slotted into fifth place but it was noted by Race Control that he had run wide at Turn 4.

The drivers all headed out for a late qualifying simulation with Rosberg again proving to be the one to beat. He was fastest of all in sector 1, fastest in sector 2 and it was a 1:20.261 for the championship leader.

Verstappen put in a late burst to go second, a mere 0.002s slower than Rosberg, while Ricciardo was third ahead of Hamilton.

Ferrari were next in line with Raikkonen in front of Vettel while Fernando Alonso was seventh ahead of Valtteri Bottas, who was running a new floor in FP3.

Times
1  Nico Rosberg  Mercedes 1'20.261 25 laps
2  Max Verstappen  Red Bull 1'20.263 +0.002 10 laps
3  Daniel Ricciardo  Red Bull 1'20.726 0.465 22 laps
4  Lewis Hamilton  Mercedes 1'20.769 0.508 23 laps
5  Kimi Raikkonen  Ferrari 1'20.859 0.598 18 laps
6  Sebastian Vettel  Ferrari 1'21.185 0.924 22 laps
7  Fernando Alonso  McLaren 1'21.584 1.323 11 laps
8  Valtteri Bottas  Williams 1'21.649 1.388 21 laps
9  Sergio Perez  Force India 1'21.672 1.411 22 laps
10  Jolyon Palmer  Renault 1'21.935 1.674 19 laps
11  Felipe Massa  Williams 1'21.975 1.714 28 laps
12  Kevin Magnussen  Renault 1'21.989 1.728 13 laps
13  Jenson Button  McLaren 1'22.009 1.748 11 laps
14  Esteban Gutierrez  Haas 1'22.142 1.881 15 laps
15  Romain Grosjean  Haas 1'22.284 2.023 13 laps
16  Carlos Sainz Jr.  Toro Rosso 1'22.402 2.141 21 laps
17  Nico Hulkenberg  Torce India 1'22.427 2.166 22 laps
18  Daniil Kvyat  Toro Rosso 1'22.541 2.280 18 laps
19  Felipe Nasr  Sauber 1'22.816 2.555 23 laps
20  Marcus Ericsson  Sauber 1'23.219 2.958 23 laps
21  Pascal Wehrlein  Manor 1'23.311 3.050 24 laps
22  Rio Haryanto  Manor 1'23.513 3.252 23 laps

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