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Shock finish for 2015 Monaco final practice

2015-05-23 13:42

MISSING THE BUS: Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton passes a bus stop as he steers his car during the third practice session at the Monaco racetrack in Monaco May 23 2015. The Formula 1 GP will be raced on Sunday. Image: AP / Gero Breloer

ALAN BALDWIN

MONTE CARLO, Monaco - Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel broke the Mercedes stranglehold on the Monaco time sheets with the fastest lap in Saturday's final practice for the showcase Mediterranean race.

The German, four times a Formula 1 champion with Red Bull and Monaco winner in 2011, lapped the metal-fenced streets with a best time of 1min16.143 in a session red-flagged after team mate Kimi Raikkonen hit the barriers.

NO POLE SINCE 2012

Mercedes duo Nico Rosberg, winner of the previous two Monaco races from pole, and current F1 champion Lewis Hamilton, were close behind with qualifying to follow later.

A Ferrari has not been on pole in F1 since July 2012.

Rosberg was 0.218sec slower than his compatriot while Hamilton, fastest in each of the earlier practice sessions but unhappy with the handling of his car on Saturday, was 0.562sec off the pace.

Australian Daniel Ricciardo was fourth-quickest for Red Bull, ahead of Spanish rookie Carlos Sainz in a Toro Rosso and Raikkonen, who crashed at Sainte Devote just after setting his best lap.

Dutch teenager Max Verstappen, second-fastest behind Hamilton in Thursday's opening practice, was ninth on the time sheets after spinning and clouting the barriers, damaging his car’s rear wing, at the last corner.

Hamilton is leading Rosberg by 20 points in the championship after five races.

2015 Monaco Formula 1 final practice times

1 Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Ferrari 1min16.143
2 Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1min16.361
3 Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 1min16.705
4 Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Red Bull-Renault 1min17.120
5 Carlos Sainz Jr (Spain) Toro Rosso-Renault 1min17.256
6 Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Ferrari 1min17.401
7 Daniil Kvyat (Russia) Red Bull-Renault 1min17.471
8 Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1min17.767
9 Max Verstappen (Netherlands) Toro Rosso-Renault 1min17.788
10 Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus-Mercedes 1min17.806
11 Sergio Perez (Mexico) Force India-Mercedes 1min17.832
12 Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Lotus-Mercedes 1min17.956
13 Nico Hulkenberg (Germany) Force India-Mercedes 1min18.102
14 Fernando Alonso (Spain) McLaren 1min18.197
15 Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams-Mercedes 1min18.212
16 Felipe Massa (Brazil) Williams-Mercedes 1min18.242
17 Felipe Nasr (Brazil) Sauber-Ferrari 1min18.767
18 Marcus Ericsson (Sweden) Sauber-Ferrari 1min19.269
19 Will Stevens (Britain) Marussia-Ferrari 1min21.093
20 Roberto Merhi (Spain) Marussia-Ferrari 1min22.225

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2015 Formula 1 series.

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