Ferrari ended the test as they started, ahead of the field, but it is Mercedes where everyone’s eyes are on after not electing to take the softer compound tyres during the test.
After Kimi Raikkonen tried the Ferrari version of the ‘halo’ devise, it was Sebastian Vettel’s turn this morning to run the proposed safety devise for 2017. He too wasn’t vocally opposed to it, but it is a ‘version one’ product, with evolution expected over the year.
The German, after removing the halo was once again at the front of the field, as Ferrari have been for much of testing, today setting a 1:22.5 on the super soft tyre, three tenths faster than local hero Carlos Sainz in the Toro Rosso in second.
Despite suggesting that they were on the same pace as Ferrari, it would be difficult to confirm that was the case at Williams on lap times alone after Felipe Massa finished the day third and eight tenths down on the same tyre.
Once again splitting the day, Mercedes did long runs with Nico Rosberg although bottom of the leaderboard, once again still running the medium tyre.
After their problems over the last few days, Haas decided to split their driver running this afternoon to give some time to Esteban Gutierrez in the car before Melbourne. With the car running more reliably on the final day of testing, they got to within a couple of tenths of a second of the Sauber on the same tyre, and ahead of the Manor who had lost the morning with their own technical problems.
|2||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m23.134s||0.282s||133|
|4||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m23.721s||0.869s||60|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/TAG Heuer||1m24.427s||1.575s||123|