Miami Grand Prix – Max Verstappen was well ahead of the pack in the final practice of the weekend, four tenths ahead of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.
Esteban Ocon was the first to venture out as the final practice session before qualifying started in Miami, the Alpine racer had the track to himself for most of the lap before the Aston Martins and Lewis Hamilton joined him.
Ocon got the timesheets started with a 1:31.125 on the medium tyres, Hamilton then joining him with a 1:31.147 on his softs. After ten minutes Max Verstappen was top of the pile with a 1;29.963, three tenths ahead of his teammate, both on the softs. At that point only seven drivers had set times and only half the grid had made an on-track appearance.
(FP3) Third Practice Results – 2023 Miami Grand Prix
There was only one Yellow Flag in the first half hour, and a brief enough one at that, when Alex Albon went into the runoff at T17 and had to spin himself to get back on track. Verstappen was still fastest having improved to a 1:27.969 while the Ferraris of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc had moved ahead of Perez for P2 and P3.
Lando Norris had a bit of a moment in the final twenty minutes, his McLaren getting out of shape on the T4 entry and the Brit had to use full steering lock and cut the corner as he got the car back under control.
After being the top two in FP1, things weren’t as easy for Mercedes today with Hamilton complaining about lack of speed and George Russell having to deal with his car hopping. They weren’t the only ones with complaints though, Logan Sargeant’s balance was all over the place while Yuki Tsunoda was frustrated with the amount of understeer he had to deal with.
In the end Verstappen’s 1:27.535 was the best of the session, four tenths quicker than Leclerc in P2 while Perez was half a second off his teammate. Sainz was P4 ahead of the two Alpines of Ocon and Pierre Gasly.
Valtteri Bottas was the best of the Alfa Romeos with a 1:28.456 in P7 while Nico Hulkenberg was the last driver within a second of the reigning champion. Albon ended the practices in P9 while Russell’s 1:28.606 saw him into P10.