Hamilton edges Vettel to top Bahrain final practice

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Lewis Hamilton edged Sebastian Vettel to end final practice for the Bahrain Grand Prix fastest.

Hamilton posted a lap of 1:34.599 on the soft tyres to top the timesheets, just six hundredths of a second faster than Vettel, who followed him over the line in the Ferrari.

Much like opening practice, this session was run in unrepresentative conditions, with qualifying and the race both set to take place after dark, under the lights.

Nico Rosberg was third in the second Mercedes, some three tenths shy of Hamilton’s session topping time, with Kimi Raikkonen four, half a second adrift in the Ferrari.

The two Williams team-mates of Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa were fifth and sixth respectively, the pair two tenths shy of Raikkonen in fourth.

Pastor Maldonado was a distant seventh for Lotus, heading a close-nit midfield, with eight cars covered by three tenths.

Daniel Ricciardo was one of those in that group, eighth fastest for Red Bull, ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and Felipe Nasr, who rounded out the top ten for Sauber.

It was a better session for Jenson Button, who was 11th quickest after stopping out on track twice on the opening day, with Fernando Alonso 16th in the sister McLaren.

Daniil Kvyat managed just seven laps in final practice after he dumped his Red Bull in the gravel at Turn 4 after a spin.

The Russian managed to return to return to the track after a quick turnaround by the Red Bull mechanics, but was just 12th on the timesheets ahead of qualifying.

Manor team-mates Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi propped up the order in 19th and 20th, well adrift of the pack, but comfortably within the 107 per cent time.

Image courtesy of Daimler

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