Williams F1
Italian GP: Encouraging FP3 for Williams Martini
By Andrew Hooper
September 1 2018

The final practice session for the 2018 Italian GP would see the Williams Martini team produce an encouraging result with their drivers finishing in 14th and 15th. Both drivers Sergey Sirotkin and Lance Stroll would have several runs on the supersoft tyre and in their qualification simulation they were able to produce an improved result based on their previous races. The chances of one or both cars making it into Q2 for qualifying are looking promising but they will have to get their runs just perfect.
 Williams Martini Italian GP Saturday Practice

Team Summary:
After some early rain the track had dried as the final practice session for the 2018 Italian GP got underway. Drivers would come out running on a mix of tyres from supersoft to medium. The first time would come from Alonso with a 1m:25.734 followed by Vandoorne. A 1m:24.321 from Alonso with only the McLaren's having set a lap time. Hulkenberg was now second with the top three on the soft tyre. Raikkonen would come out on the supersoft tyre as Ericsson went fourth. The two Mercedes cars and Vettel were also out on the supersoft tyre. Raikkonen would go quickest with a 1m:21.484 with Hamilton moving into second. Vettel would have a lockup appearing to flat spotting his tyres. But Vettel was able to continue and would set a 1m:22.005 to be third.

Ricciardo was now sixth behind Sainz. Bottas was now fourth while the Williams drivers after their first flying laps were 10th and 13th. As others went quicker they would drop down the order to be 15th and 18th. At the front Hamilton had gone quickest with a 1m:21.392 followed by Raikkonen, Vettel, Verstappen, Bottas, Ricciardo, Perez, Ocon, Grosjean, and Sainz tenth. The Williams drivers were now 17th and 18th with just over twenty minutes remaining. Vettel would return and would set a quick middle sector to go quickest with a 1m:21.035. Raikkonen would go second moving ahead of Hamilton. With seventeen minutes remaining the track was now quite empty as Vettel went even faster with a 1m:20.509 to be 0.6 ahead of his team-mate. Raikkonen would also improve to be just 0.173 behind Vettel after a second run from both Ferrari's.

More drivers were returning for their qualifying simulations with Hamilton going second with a 1m:20.676 and Bottas was only fourth. Verstappen was fifth followed by Ricciardo, Grosjean, Ocon, Perez and Alonso tenth. Hamilton would improve with a 1m:20.590 to be only 0.08 behind Vettel. Magnussen was now sixth followed by Ocon and Ricciardo. With the end of the session the top ten would be Vettel, Hamilton, Raikkonen, Bottas, Verstappen, Magnussen, Ocon, Ricciardo, Leclerc and Grosjean. The Williams drivers would finish in 14th and 15th, a very encouraging result.

Lance Stroll:
With five minutes of the session completed Lance would take to the track also using the soft tyre. Lance would pit after a single lap. Lance was now out with thirty seven minutes remaining and his first lap would see him set a slow 1m:32.586 after an issue in the middle sector. His next lap would see an improvement setting a time of 1m:24.449 to be 13th. He would drop to 18th but he was on the soft tyre. Lance would pit after a seven lap run. Lance would return this time on the supersoft tyre. Lance would set a 1m:23.632 to now be 18th and one place ahead of his team-mate. Lance would again improve with a 1m:23.239 to be 15th as he pitted after a seven lap run. In his pit he would drop to 18th. Lance would come out for a third run again on new supersoft tyres. He would set a 1m:22.860 to be 14th. This would become 15th as Sergey moved ahead of him.

Sergey Sirotkin:
Sergey would be the first Williams to take to the track running on the soft tyre. He would pit after a single installation lap. With just over forty minutes remaining Sergey would return running on new supersoft tyres. Sergey would set a 1m:25.056 to be fifth dropping to ninth. But Sergey was able to set a 1m:23.954 to move into eighth. He would drop to tenth approaching the half way point of the session. This would become 13th as others went quicker. He would improve with a 1m:23.795 but was now 11th. Again he would drop down the order to be 16th as he continued a longer run on the supersoft tyres with twenty five minutes remaining in the session. Sergey would also pit after a twelve lap run indicating that he was running a lot of fuel in his first run. Sergey was now 19th but was yet to come out for a second run. With ten minutes remaining Sergey would return and would set a 1m:23.100 to be 14th, dropping to 15th. This would become 16th as Lance moved ahead of him. But Sergey would set a 1M;22.778 to be 12th but would drop to 14th.

Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m20.509s - 18
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m20.590s 0.081s 14
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m20.682s 0.173s 16
4 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m21.112s 0.603s 18
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull-Renault 1m21.388s 0.879s 15
6 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1m22.011s 1.502s 15
7 Esteban Ocon Force India-Mercedes 1m22.055s 1.546s 16
8 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m22.310s 1.801s 15
9 Charles Leclerc Sauber-Ferrari 1m22.313s 1.804s 17
10 Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari 1m22.357s 1.848s 16
11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m22.486s 1.977s 13
12 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso-Honda 1m22.631s 2.122s 20
13 Carlos Sainz Renault 1m22.737s 2.228s 15
14 Sergey Sirotkin Williams-Mercedes 1m22.778s 2.269s 20
15 Lance Stroll Williams-Mercedes 1m22.860s 2.351s 19
16 Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1m22.882s 2.373s 25
17 Fernando Alonso McLaren-Renault 1m22.892s 2.383s 23
18 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren-Renault 1m22.987s 2.478s 16
19 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m23.149s 2.640s 10
20 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso-Honda 1m23.164s 2.655s 19