Pre-season Day 3 report: Perez tops the afternoon

Pre-season Day 3 report: Perez tops the afternoon

The Formula 1 pre-season testing is now over and the countdown for the first Grand Prix of the season is on.

The drivers

These are the drivers that participated in the afternoon session.

Team Driver
Alfa Romeo F1 Team Valtteri Bottas
Aston Martin F1 Team Fernando Alonso
BWT Alpine F1 Team Esteban Ocon
McLaren F1 Team Lando Norris
Mercedes F1 Team Lewis Hamilton
Moneygram Haas F1 Team Kevin Magnussen
Oracle Red Bull Racing Sergio Perez
Scuderia AlphaTauri Yuki Tsunoda
Scuderia Ferrari Carlos Sainz
Williams Racing Alexander Albon

The recap

Red Bull's Sergio Perez topped the afternoon session, the first driver to top the 1:30s with a laptime of 1:30.305s, topping all sectors, with the C4 compound tire.

Behind Perez was Lewis Hamilton, completing a lap with his Mercedes in 1:30.664s with the C5 compound. Valtteri Bottas completed the top three, with the C5 tire, by a gap of 0.163s to Hamilton.

We enjoyed a lap of racing in the closing stages of the session following the red flag, with most drivers having a go at high-speed overtakes.

What they're saying

  • Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing: "The evolution of the car compared to last year, it seems to work very nicely so everyone did a good job. It's definitely an improvement, but also because of the little rules which change the floor you lose a bit of performance from that, but I think overall the car took a step forward. I think there are always things you can do better. It's never perfect after two days of testing for me. That's what we will look at it and just maybe have a few different ideas about a few different tracks."
  • Oscar Piastri, McLaren F1 Team: "It's been a good week of learning. My first proper running in a new generation of new F1 cars, so, I've learned a lot. We've had a couple of hiccups here and there, but that's testing, I feel that is to be expected... I think we're about where we expected to be. We are probably somewhere in the mix of the midfield is my best guess at the moment. Of course, we don't know about fuel loads and all that, but we will find out where everyone really is next Saturday."
  • Fred Vasseur, Ferrari Team Principal: "Nobody knows what the others are doing, levels of fuel, engine modes and more. We have to wait until next week. For sure you want to do more as three days is quite short but it is the same for everybody, although if you ask the drivers, they'd want one more week. The mood is perfect, I think we are in good shape today. The championship will be long and difficult but at the end of the day it will be a good challenge. When we are able to put everything together, the pace is there."
  • Christian Horner Red Bull Racing Team Principal: "Ferrari look like they are quick. Mercedes' form is very difficult to read. Are they holding something back? I think [Aston Martin] have made a big step. It looks like their concept of car has seen them make a big step. Fernando [Alonso] in particular looks very comfortable."
  • Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin Racing: "F1 teams have a similar philosophy and approach for racing. All extremely good at what they do. In Aston Martin, there is this energy and trying to become a contender for the future. New wind tunnel, investments... It shows the interest in being a top team soon. It's a very nice project."

Stay tuned for our technical analysis for subscribers coming soon today!

Written by Luciano Calamante.