Charles Leclerc unexpectedly set the pace in final practice at the Singapore GP as upgraded Ferrari surprisingly usurped Friday pacesetters Mercedes and Red Bull.
Although Leclerc has won the past two races, the slow-speed nature of the Marina Bay street circuit has not been expected to suit their car and Friday’s timesheet – when they finished 0.8s off Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen’s pace – appeared to underline such theories.
Lewis Hamilton goes spinning in final practice in Singapore.
Hamilton, who spun on an out lap, eventually cut Leclerc’s advantage to 0.207s but Red Bull’s Verstappen wound up 1.1s off the pace in sixth place.
Verstappen, who did encounter traffic on his best lap, finished just behind rookie team-mate Alex Albon, who was fifth.
Sergio Perez, meanwhile, is in danger of a gearbox penalty ahead of qualifying after hitting the barriers at Turn 21 mid-way through the session and doing damage to the rear of his Racing Point car.
At Toro Rosso-Honda, meanwhile, the team’s mechanics are performing an engine change ahead of qualifying after Daniil Kvyat’s STR14 starting smoking during P3. But the Russian should escape a grid drop.