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Full Race Weekend LIVE Converage Australian Grand Prix Melbourne
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Last Updated at 05:55
17 Mar 08:42 No Ferrari on the podium today.
17 Mar 08:41 Bottas got those 26 points he wanted!
17 Mar 08:40 Sebastian Vettel is fourth with team mate Charles Leclerc fifth.
17 Mar 08:40 Lewis Hamilton pushes for second just ahead of Max Verstappen in third place.
17 Mar 08:39 Valtteri Bottas wins the Australian GP!
17 Mar 08:38 Bottas going for the fastest lap while Max is right on Hamilton by 0.8 seconds!
17 Mar 08:36 3 laps to go!
17 Mar 08:36 Hamilton trying to go for fastest point to take it away from Verstappen (the extra point).
17 Mar 08:35 Max told to go for Hamilton.
17 Mar 08:34 Verstappen just had the fastest lap of the race and narrowed the gap down to 1.3 seconds. 
17 Mar 08:30 Verstappen trying to close the gap between him and Hamilton.
17 Mar 08:29 7 more laps and Bottas is leading by 25.2 seconds.
17 Mar 08:25 10 more laps to go.
17 Mar 08:09 Kvyat goes off at Turn 3 and loses a place after driving so well in P10.
17 Mar 08:04 Gasly has still not yet had a pit stop.
17 Mar 08:04 Looks like Verstappen will be passing Hamilton soon. Jus 1 second between them.
17 Mar 08:03 Hamilton having trouble.
17 Mar 08:02 That left wheel came back to haunt Grosjean, it's the reason he had to retire the race.
17 Mar 08:00 And then Grosjean retires too in the Haas. And Grosjean was racing so well. :(
17 Mar 07:59 Heartbreak for Ricciardo as he retires from his home race. This is his 3rd retirement in Oz. He must be gutted.
17 Mar 07:59 Max takes P3 from Vettel!
17 Mar 07:58 Vettel is only 2 seconds behind Hamilton, and Max is on Seb's heels!
17 Mar 07:57 Battle for 3rd between Vettel and Verstappen.
17 Mar 07:57 Hamilton back in P2, but reports that he is not sure if he can get to the end of the race in those tyres.
17 Mar 07:54 Bottas building the lead from Leclerc. Hamilton in P3.
17 Mar 07:40 Bottas leads Verstappen by 12 seconds.
17 Mar 07:40 Hamilton seems to be struggling on the new tyres.
17 Mar 07:38 Grosjean's delay in the pits was due to his left front tyre not wanting to go on properly.
17 Mar 07:37 Grosjean keeps his place from Albon in the Toro Rosso.
17 Mar 07:37 Grosjean and Norris in the pits who has lost several places.
17 Mar 07:36 Hamilton in the pits and rejoins in P4.
17 Mar 07:36 Hulkenburg and Magnussen do a lil dance.
FINISH Well, Ferrari will head back to Maranello with a huge job on their hands to catch Mercedes. We will find out in Bahrain if they can do it. See you then everyone.
FINISH The rest of the top ten is as follows: P4 Vettel, P5 Leclerc, P6, Magnussen, P7 Hulkenberg, P8 Raikkonen, P9 Stroll and P10 Kvyat. And the others now: P11 Gasly, P12 Norris, P13 Perez, P14 Albon, P15 Giovinazzi, P16 Russell and P17 Kubica. Retirements: Grosjean, Ricciardo and Sainz.
FINISH Hamilton holds on to secure a Mercedes one-two, with Verstappen taking the final podium spot. No Ferrari's on the podium!
Lap 58 Valtteri Bottas wins the 2019 Australian Grand Prix!!
Lap 58 A 1:25.580 from Bottas to re-claim the fastest lap point, he now heads onto his final tour of Albert Park.
Lap 57 Gasly is desperate to pass Kvyat still for that final points position.
Lap 57 Hamilton says he is going for a fastest lap, what happened to his good for nothing tyres?
Lap 55 The Dutchman has put his foot down and taken the fastest lap off Bottas. The Mercedes man has told his team "I want 26 points" and he has cracked on with trying to take that point back.
Lap 53 With six laps to go, Verstappen needs to make up a two second gap to Hamilton if he wants to wreck the Mercedes 1-2.
Lap 52 It appears we have a swift answer, Leclerc has backed right off.
Lap 51 Leclerc is there, he is right on the gearbox of his team-mate. Moment of truth Ferrari, what do you do?
Lap 51 The lead Williams driver Russell is now almost a minute off Giovinazzi ahead in P15.
Lap 50 Verstappen heads onto the grass at turn 1, we doubt that is what Red Bull meant when they told him "ten laps of fun".
Lap 49 Below that it's even closer, with Kvyat and Gasly now back on that Raikkonen/Stroll battle.
Lap 48 P6 to 11 is separated by around six seconds, at least the prediction of a tight midfield pack appears to be sticking.
Lap 47 A dilemma for Ferrari, do they let their duo fight? Two points are there for Leclerc if he passes Vettel, or do they put a new set of tyres on Leclerc's car so he sets the fastest lap and claims one?
Lap 46 Another seven tenths Leclerc shaves off the deficit to Vettel on lap 45.
Lap 45 Red Bull have told Verstappen to play it cool with Hamilton saying he can have: "ten laps of fun at the end."
Lap 45 Leclerc took a second out of his team-mate there - could things get worse still for the four-time champ?
Lap 44 Vettel: "Why are we so slow?" Ferrari: "We don't know at the moment." A shell-shocked Ferrari on the radio there.
Lap 43 Who would have thought that Ferrari would be running over half a minute behind the Mercedes after winter testing? Come on, be honest.
Lap 42 Gasly is now being told to apply the overtake boost of that Honda engine for five seconds. One positive is that he and Kvyat are catching Stroll again.
Lap 41 Bottas is now 22 seconds ahead of his team-mate. What a drive this is from the Finn so far to answer his critics.
Lap 40 Kvyat is on the hard tyres, while Gasly has the softs on - surely he has to pass him soon, if not you would expect Red Bull to order a swap.
Lap 39 It's just not Gasly's weekend. The final man to pit, he moves down to P11, and still he is behind Kvyat!
Lap 39 324,000 the confirmed attendance for the 2019 Australian Grand Prix.
Lap 38 Kvyat is off into the gravel as he tries an over-ambitious move on Stroll into - you guessed it - turn 3. Fortunately he keeps the car going.
Lap 37 And the rest of the order now: P11 Kvyat, P12 Norris, P13 Perez, P14 Albon, P15 Giovinazzi, P16 Russell and P17 Kubica. Grosjean, Ricciardo and Sainz are your retirements.
Lap 36 Let's run you through the top 10: P1 Bottas, P2 Hamilton, P3 Verstappen, P4 Vettel, P5 Leclerc, P6 Gasly, P7 Magnussen, P8 Hulkenberg, P9 Raikkonen and P10 Stroll.
Lap 35 Verstappen is closing on Hamilton, the Brit has told his engineers that the rear tyres are gone.
Lap 34 That Grosjean retirement was due to the left front coming loose. Come on Haas, not another connection problem in Australia.
Lap 33 Lap 33 and Bottas is 19 seconds clear of the pack - who would have predicted that before lights out?
Lap 32 Meanwhile his former team-mate Ricciardo retires from the Australian GP, while Grosjean joins him with an early exit - the third year in a row this fate has befallen the Frenchman.
Lap 31 Verstappen tries it on the straight, but with a fantastic exit off turn 2, he makes it past the Ferrari into that popular overtaking spot of turn 3. The Red Bull man is into P3!
Lap 30 Verstappen is right behind Vettel now, the Dutchman has his eyes on that last podium spot. P2 may even be possible if Hamilton goes off the cliff like he himself is predicting.
Lap 29 Leclerc is the last of the front-runners to pit, he has bolted on the hard compound. Ferrari perhaps were swayed by Hamilton's woes.
Lap 29 Blimey, he waits all that time for a pit stop and the front left won't go on for Giovinazzi.
Lap 28 The Italian is a sitting duck now, as Perez passes him on the straight. Any slower and even Williams will match him. However, his holding up has benefited team-mate Raikkonen hugely.
Lap 27 Norris is finally through, getting past Giovinazzi down the inside of turn 3 after the rookie got out of shape. Grosjean then gets through at turn 13.
Lap 26 Race leader Verstappen is in. A rapid 2.3s stop. Interestingly he puts on the mediums despite Hamilton's woes. Of course the teams don't have much experience of running them white-striped hard tyres. He rejoins P5.
Lap 25 Hamilton is on the radio saying the mediums will not go to the end.
Lap 25 Quite the train behind Giovinazzi now - Norris, Grosjean, Albon and Perez all want to get through.
Lap 24 Bottas is in and out, he is well ahead of Hamilton and Vettel and is sitting very pretty right now.
Lap 23 Norris thinks he sees a gap into turn 3, but that door is shut by Giovinazzi. the young Brit is showing a wise head, knowing there is no point risking disaster at this stage.
Lap 23 Bottas, Verstappen and Leclerc are you're current top three, none of them have pitted, as pretty much running their own race their tyres are likely to be in good nick.
Lap 22 Norris is pushed wide by Giovinazzi. The Alfa Romeo man hasn't pitted yet, and McLaren are already on the radio telling Norris he has to make the overtake now!
Lap 21 Hamilton is in the 1:29's, while Bottas is setting 1:27's. He isn't liking them medium tyres.
Lap 20 Bottas looks very comfortable at the front. He hasn't even pitted but still sets a new fastest lap of the race.
Lap 19 Ricciardo lapped - not what he wanted in his home GP and Renault debut.
Lap 18 Hamilton, down in P4, recorded an out-lap two seconds slower than Vettel, and the gap between the pair is now only two seconds.
Lap 17 Hang on, Vettel sets the fastest lap - life in the Ferrari perhaps?
Lap 17 Oh no, more issues in the pits for Haas, Grosjean's front left just wouldn't go on. He drops behind Hulkenberg, Raikkonen and Norris.
Lap 16 Hamilton is in, as Bottas breaks his own fastest lap
Lap 16 Vettel is in, he looks for the undercut, of course it was Vettel's pit stop under the virtual safety car last season that helped him to victory here in 2018.
Lap 15 A 1:28.300 for Bottas, with no challenge from behind the Silver Arrows pair may as well battle with themselves.
Lap 15 Hulkenberg pits and joins his team-mate on the hard compound. He drops to P14 but stays ahead of Raikkonen.
Lap 14 1:28.616 for Hamilton, he takes over as the fastest lap holder.
Lap 13 Raikkonen is in the pits, he bolts on the yellow mediums and looks to be going for the undercut.
Lap 13 Hamilton outpaced his team-mate for the first time on lap 11 - is he starting to up his pace now in the clean air?
Lap 12 We have our first retirement of 2019 - it's Sainz. His McLaren has gone up in smoke, and now flames are visible at the back as he pulls into the pit entrance.
Lap 11 Gasly still can't make an impression on Kvyat - they are both running on the yellow mediums as well.
Lap 9 Leclerc takes a brief break to cut the grass at turn 1, he holds on to P5.
Lap 7 Bottas has built up a 2 second gap over Hamilton, who is then 4.5s clear of Vettel in the Ferrari.
Lap 6 Gasly is struggling to find a way past Kvyat in that Toro Rosso right now - how long before Red Bull give their sister team a call?
Lap 5 Right now Bottas is set for an extra point with the race's fastest lap - let's see how long it stays that way.
Lap 4 To run you through the rest of the order - P8 Hulkenberg, P9 Raikkonen, P10 Norris, P11 Albon, P12 Perez, P13 Stroll, P14 Sainz, P15 Kvyat, P16 Gasly, P17 Giovinazzi, P18 Russell, P19 Kubica and of course Ricciardo P20, though he already has his eyes on Kubica.
Lap 2 Replays show Ricciardo was pushed onto the grass by Perez - he's now down to P20 after pitting for a new front wing - he also threw on a set of the hard tyres.
Lap 1 P3 to P7 remains the same - Vettel, Verstappen, Leclerc, Magnussen and Grosjean.
Lap 1 Lights out! Bottas jumps Hamilton, what a start he has ahead of his team-mate before turn 1 - Ricciardo has lost his front wing and has sunk down the field.
16:13 Hamilton slots into position, the remaining 19 are getting set behind him.
16:11 Kubica taking a different strategy to everyone else, he will start on the slowest hard compound. Perhaps playing the long game and hoping others come into difficulty is Williams' only hope.
16:10 Hamilton leads the grid away for their formation lap.
16:05 The long winter is almost over, five minutes to go until the first race of 2019 - the Australian Grand Prix!
16:00 McLaren chief Zak Brown describes Norris' quali performance as a "little win" for McLaren.
15:58 Helmut Marko says Red Bull developed in the wrong direction for qualifying, going in to the race he says their pace compared to Ferrari is good, but their gap to Mercedes is "shocking".
15:56 George Russell says he isn't where he wants to be, but has to go out and enjoy his first race. Finishing the race and gathering data for Williams is his only goal today.
15:55 Everyone at Albert Park pays tribute to all those who lost and their lives and were affected by the terrorist attack in New Zealand. A thank you Charlie sign is also proudly displayed.
15:53 Ricciardo believes he is out of position on the grid, with a one-stop race planned he says he will likely go aggressive, and if that doesn't work Renault will re-assess and do something different with strategy.
15:49 The legendary Alan Jones is in attendance at his home GP, he says Daniel Ricciardo is still getting to grips with the different feeling of the brakes in the Renault, but expects to see his compatriot on the podium soon.
15:40 As recently as last season Hamilton suffered from the race curse, as Vettel drove to victory at the 2018 Aussie GP, despite Hamilton being six tenths clear of the pack in qualifying.
15:32 It is another perfect day at the Albert Park circuit, blue skies and very warm. The track temperature is heading into the 40'C with Norris saying he reckons this could be the hottest race he's ever contested.
15:25 But while Hamilton may be starting from pole position it must be noted that he has only won the Australian GP twice in his career, and only once in the last seven has the pole position man taken the chequered flag.
15:14 The other prediction arriving in Melbourne was that Williams would struggle. Unfortunately for George Russell and Robert Kubica that has come to pass and they were slowest of all in qualifying. The lower half of the grid: 11 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:22.562; 12 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:22.570; 13 Alexander Albon Toro Rosso 1:22.636; 14 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 1:22.714; 15 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:22.774; 16 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:23.017; 17 Pierre Gasly Red Bull Racing 1:23.020; 18 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1:23.084; 19 George Russell Williams 1:24.360; 20 Robert Kubica Williams 1:26.067.
15:11 Although many expected Ferrari to be the team to beat this weekend it was instead Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas who locked out the front row of the grid. The top ten: 1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:20.486; 2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 0.112; 3 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 0.704; 4 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 0.834; 5 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 0.956; 6 Romain Grosjean Haas 1.340; 7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1.613; 8 Lando Norris McLaren 1.818; 9 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo 1.828; 10 Sergio Perez Racing Point 2.295.
15:06 Formula 1 arrived in Melbourne earlier this week to the sad news that Charlie Whiting, the sport's long-time race director, had passed away. The teams and drivers paid tribute to the 66-year-old on Sunday morning while many of the cars are carrying the message "Thank you Charlie". Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those who knew Charlie.
15:00 Welcome back to the Albert Park circuit for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton has the pole, his eighth in Melbourne, but not all hope is lost for his rivals as the Mercedes driver has only twice won the Australian Grand Prix.
18:07 Well, Red Bull appear to have been very wrong with their talk of a close top three. Horner also said that the Mercedes doesn't look a strong race car, will they get something right this weekend? Them and the rest of the grid better hope so! Join us for the race tomorrow folks.
18:06 To complete the top ten for you, Grosjean takes P6 with his team-mate Magnussen in P7 - a solid day for Haas. Norris with a stunning debut qualy performance puts his McLaren in P8 for the race tomorrow. Raikkonen P9 and Perez P10.
18:02 Bottas can't repeat the magic, Hamilton is on pole for the Australian Grand Prix with a 1:20.486. Vettel is P3 seven tenths off the pace, while Verstappen splits the Ferrari's to claim P4. Leclerc in P5 is almost a second behind the pole sitter!
18:00 Provisional pole for Hamilton!
17:59 Ohhh, Hamilton goes purple in sector 1.
17:57 The drivers flood back out, surely only Hamilton can challenge his team-mate for pole now.
17:55 Vettel and Leclerc sit P3 and 4 after the first run on the softs, Verstappen in P5 is over a second off that Bottas time.
17:53 Bottas, WOW! A 1:20.598 - a new one-lap record to make Hamilton's attempt stand for only a matter of minutes.
17:52 A shot down the straight shows how tough that Mercedes is to steer, but it's blisteringly fast.
17:49 The Scuderia pair make a break for it early.
17:48 Right, Ferrari and Red Bull what have you got? Q3 is underway.
17:47 Pierre Gasly says Red Bull are clearly not where they want to be - worrying words for Verstappen heading into Q3. A shout-out too to Norris, who on his Formula 1 debut is in the shootout for pole, comfortably outqualifying his experienced team-mate Sainz.
17:44 Right then, business picks up in a few minutes with the battle for pole. Can Mercedes be caught? Are Ferrari sandbagging? Can Verstappen use the new Honda party mode to close that gap? Join us soon to find out.
17:42 Kvyat and Albon in P15 and 13 bow out for Toro Rosso, Giovinazzi is well adrift of his team-mate in P14, while Ricciardo and Hulkenberg are the shock departures in P12 and 11 respectively.
17:41 Ricciardo and Hulkenberg out!
17:40 Hamilton with a brand new one-lap record at Albert Park - a 1:21.014.
17:40 The chequered flag waives again. Bare with us, we're going to see a barrage of times once more.
17:37 The heavy hitters aren't risking it, they all throw on a new set of the soft compound and head out.
17:35 Norris P15, Giovinazzi P14, Albon P13, Kvyat P12, Grosjean P11 makes up the elimination zone right now with five minutes to go.
17:33 Verstappen shoots into P2, but still he is half a second off Bottas' pace.
17:31 Leclerc splits the Mercedes right now, but Hamilton has time to find after he was caught in traffic.
17:30 Bottas with a very strong lap to go P1 on the softs - a 1:21.241.
17:27 Well, the light is green, let's do this again.
17:26 Take a breath folks, that was one of the most exciting Q1 sessions in a long time. A little stat for you - Nico Hulkenberg hasn't been beaten by a team-mate in the overall qualifying battle since his rookie year in 2010. Ricciardo looks a big threat to that record already.
17:22 Join us for Q2 in a matter of moments.
17:21 Kubica finishes P20, with Russell in P19. A disappointing session for McLaren with Sainz departing in P18. The big shock, Pierre Gasly is out for Red Bull in P17! Stroll is the last driver out in P16, yet he was only a second off Charles Leclerc's P1 time.
17:19 The track is evolving and the times are tumbling with the chequered flag waiving.
17:17 Vettel and Leclerc are the only drivers who haven't set a time on the softs yet, Vettel looks safe in P4 but Leclerc is in danger down in P12.
17:15 Albon, Stroll and Magnussen are the drivers in danger right now alongside the Williams duo, two and half minutes remain of Q1.
17:14 P3 for Verstappen, but he's eight tenths off Hamilton who has just gone P1 with a 1:22.043.
17:13 Bottas extends his lead to three tenths over Hamilton on the softs.
17:12 Down at the other end, Williams are going to struggle to make Q2, the three who join them is anybody's guess right now.
17:11 The Red Bull's first efforts put Gasly P6 and Verstappen P7, they are even behind Hulkenberg and Perez at the moment.
17:10 Hamilton resumes his familiar spot of P1 briefly with a 1:22.681 on the soft compound, but Bottas is quick to displace him, going 0.023s faster on the same tyres.
17:06 Vettel has smashed that already in the supremely stable Ferrari - a 1:23.891 on the mediums. But that didn't last long as Raikkonen, Giovinazzi, Leclerc and Kvyatt all quickly jump ahead of the four-time champ.
17:04 Lando Norris kicks us off with a 1:24.645 in the McLaren, he has the softs on straight away.
17:00 The lights go green, let's do this!
16:55 Well, we're just about set, the first qualifying session of the season gets underway in five minutes time.
16:53 Williams continue to look doomed, with FP3 showing their alarming lack of speed once again, with Robert Kubica hitting the wall en-route to the pits for good measure.
16:50 Red Bull's ultimate pace remains unknown, with Pierre Gasly taking P6 in the final practice session, while Max Verstappen claimed P9.
16:46 Charles Leclerc slotted into P3, four tenths shy of the pace, but the Silver Arrows' other challenger Valtteri Bottas struggled with his qualifying simulations, ending FP3 over a second off his team-mate's benchmark.
16:41 Sebastian Vettel recovered time for Ferrari to finish P2, but still he was two tenths shy of Hamilton.
16:36 Can anyone one stop Lewis Hamilton? The reigning World Champion made it a hat-trick of free practice triumphs this morning, setting the fastest time of the weekend - a 1:22.292 to go fastest in FP3.
16:31 Welcome back to Melbourne once again, it's time to find out who truly has the pace with qualifying just 30 minutes away.
15:02 Join us in two hours for qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix. Cheers!
15:00 The chequered flag is out on FP3 with a P1 for Hamilton and a P20 for Kubica.
14:59 A minute remaining...
14:55 Gasly goes sixth fastest and Verstappen ninth. They are separated by Bottas and the Toro Rosso of Kvyat.
14:53 Hot laps coming thick and fast with Raikkonen ninth after a bit of traffic in the form of Sainz in the McLaren. The Bulls are both on the soft tyres - finally.
14:52 Bottas tries to get involved but instead has a moment as he struggles to control his W10 through the corners. He improves his time but stays P6.
14:49 Here comes Hamilton with a response... purple in the first sector, a tenth down in the second, and quickest in the third. A 1:22.292 for the reigning World Champ and he is back up into P1.
14:46 Fresh rubber on Vettel's SF90 and he goes purple in the first sector, again in the second, and in the third, and goes quickest with a 1:22.556. That's eight-tenths up Hamilton.
14:41 Good news for Kubica is that Williams believe he will be back out before the end of the session as the damage is not too severe.
14:36 Williams' woes continue as Kubica whacks the wall on his way into the pits. He got it a bit wrong and hit the wall with the left side of the car. Ouch.
14:34 Hamilton ups his pace to a 1:23.360, Bottas goes second, and Vettel is now half a second off the pace.
14:30 Top ten: 1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:23.699; 2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 0.040s; 3 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 0.149s; 4 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 0.154s; 5 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1.090s; 6 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1.161s; 7 Romain Grosjean Haas 1.170s; 8 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1.171s; 9 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1.184s; 10 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1.185s.
14:27 And here comes Hamilton.... a 1:23.699 for the Mercedes man and a new P1.
14:24 Vettel sticks his Ferrari up into P1 on his first run, a 1:23.739 while Bottas is second, 0.114s down, and Leclerc third.
14:21 Kvyat goes quickest in the Toro Rosso on the soft tyres as Vettel, Leclerc and Bottas join the action. Only Hamilton has yet to run.
14:17 Ricciardo kicks up a bit of dirt on his way to second place. He is using the softs to Verstappen's mediums and finished three-tenths behind his former team-mate.
14:11 Verstappen hits the front with a 1:25.1, a second faster than his new team-mate Gasly. Red Bull have revealed that it was a "concern" about Verstappen's fuel cell that resulted in the chassis change - apparently it is easier to change that than to change a fuel tank.
14:05 P1 for Russell! But yeah, only time that has been set so far so not much to cheer about. A 1:30.3 for the rookie. To put it into perspective, Hamilton's P1 time from Friday was a 1:22.
14:03 Norris pulls out of the McLaren garage right in front of the Williams of Kubica. That was a little close but then again, who wants to be stuck behind a Williams given their pace - or lack thereof.
14:00 Green light and off we go with Verstappen in his new chassis the first driver out on track. He is followed by Raikkonen.
13:53 The track temperature is up to 43'C and the air temperature is 22' as we await the start of FP3.
13:49 It is another glorious day in Melbourne so expect a lot of running in this year hour as the drivers complete their qualifying preparations. But can anyone beat Mercedes? While some have suggested Ferrari were sandbagging on Friday, Vettel himself says he is worried that Mercedes are in a league of their own. We will find out shortly.
13:43 Williams had an awful day, slowest of the slow. 11 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1.333s (S); 12 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1.388s (S); 13 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1.411s (S); 14 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1.533s (S); 15 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1.693s (S); 16 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1.801s (S); 17 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 2.075s (S); 18 Lando Norris McLaren 2.133s (S); 19 George Russell Williams 3.853s (S); 20 Robert Kubica Williams 4.055s (S).
13:42 Mercedes were quickest on Friday with a 1:22.600 for Hamilton, who edged Valtteri Bottas by 0.048s. Verstappen was third ahead of Pierre Gasly. The top ten: 1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:22.600 (S); 2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 0.048s (S); 3 Max Verstappen Red Bull 0.800s (S); 4 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 0.842s (S); 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 0.873s (S); 6 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 0.972s (S); 7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 0.974s (S); 8 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1.044s (S); 9 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1.154s (S); 10 Romain Grosjean Haas 1.214s (S).
13:37 News in this morning is that Max Verstappen has been handed a new chassis overnight although Red Bull have yet revealed why. He was P3 on Friday, 0.8s down on pace-setter Lewis Hamilton. Meanwhile Haas also broke curfew due to a cooling issue with Romain Grosjean's car.
13:30 Welcome back to Melbourne for the third and final practice session for the Australian Grand Prix weekend.
17:39 Well that's all folks, make sure to join us for FP3 tomorrow, where we are likely to see everyone turn it up a notch as they prepare for the first qualifying session of 2019.
17:37 Kvyat, Magnussen, Stroll, Sainz, Giovinazzi, Perez, Albon, Norris, Russell and Kubica take care of P11 to 20.
17:35 Just 0.25s separates Hulkenberg in P7 down to to Grosjean in P10. With the softs bolted on, that midfield pack remains tight.
17:34 Vettel takes P5, with his former team-mate Raikkonen just 0.1s behind in the Alfa.
17:33 Oh heck, Gasly suffers a loss of power but gets the RB15 back to the pits, are the reliability issues back? The Frenchman does secure P4, but with his partner Verstappen in P3, eight tenths shy of the Mercedes, it's clear that Red Bull weren't showing their true pace.
17:31 The chequered flag waives. Hamilton tops the timings again in FP2, with his 1:22.600. His team-mate Bottas was right there though, just 0.048s adrift.
17:29 The back end of the Ferrari bails on Leclerc at the exit of turn 4. He eventually gets going again.
17:25 Russell goes into the gravel at turn 3, but he keeps it out of the wall, a rare positive for the Williams team.
17:22 Bottas is back on the mediums with seven minutes remaining.
17:20 10 minutes of the session to go.
17:19 Giovinazzi gets into a spin at the penultimate corner, at least Albon has a friend now who knows how it feels.
17:15 It's a 1:23.400 for Verstappen as he shoots ahead of his team-mate into P3. Not the pace we expected, perhaps the tyres weren't in the right window after the Dutchman was forced to back off on his first attempt? Or Red Bull could just be playing with us.
17:12 It's Giovinazzi's first FP session since 2017, and you can tell as he wrecks Verstappen's first flying lap.
17:11 Verstappen bolts on a set of the softs with 19 minutes to go, let's see what he can do.
17:10 Off goes Albon again, spinning onto the grass at the penultimate corner.
17:09 His team-mate Daniil Kvyat now jumps on the radio to ask where his drinks bottle is, a breakdown in communication with his engineer.
17:02 Albon reports on the radio that he got his finger stuck in the headrest and almost hit the wall, is this guy cursed?
17:01 His team-mate Lando Norris is sixth tenths back as he sets a 1:25.061, also on the softs.
17:00 Carlos Sainz puts in a 1:24.133 for McLaren on the softs, that's only good enough for P14.
16:57 It's not all good news for Hamilton though, with the familiar gremlin of Mercedes rear tyre wear an issue for the Brit again.
16:53 A 1:22.600 puts Hamilton back on top, but only 0.048s ahead of his team-mate. Is this a rejuvenated Bottas that's arrived in Melbourne?
16:50 Verstappen looks to be doing his race simulations on the medium tyre, rather than getting in on the fastest-lap action.
16:47 Albon is going off-roading again, this time mowing the grass at turn 3, but he escapes with front wing in-tact this time around.
16:45 Bottas gained eight tenths there between the medium and soft compounds.
16:44 Early signs suggest the Mercedes, while more difficult to drive than the Ferrari, is every bit as fast, as Bottas puts in a 1:22.648 on the softs to go P1.
16:42 Vettel is just starting to crank it up on the mediums, going P4, but there's much more pace to come.
16:36 Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi with a fine effort on the mediums splits the Haas' to go P5.
16:32 Ricciardo still can't jump Hulkenberg on the same medium compound, remaining in P11, while a nice but perhaps irrelevant graphic shows how he is currently 1.5s off his former team-mate Verstappen's fastest time of FP2.
16:28 Fine margins for the reigning champ as he shaves another hundredth off his time.
16:24 Hamilton strengthens his lead, improving to a 1:23.206 on the mediums.
16:21 All change at the top, as Hamilton and Bottas go P1 and 2 respectively, while Verstappen takes over P3, all times were set on the mediums.
16:19 With some drivers on the hard tyres and others on mediums, we aren't seeing representative pace just yet.
16:16 Russell and Robert Kubica are trading times at the back for Williams, at least they have something worthwhile to do.
16:13 Kevin Magnussen is the first man of FP2 into the 1:24's, a 1:24.409.
16:11 Pierre Gasly goes P1 with a 1:25.401.
16:10 Russell is already over three seconds off Grosjean's time with his first attempt of FP2 in the Williams.
16:08 Leclerc slots into P2 on the hard tyres.
16:04 Grosjean records the first time of FP2, a 1:25.634.
16:02 Romain Grosjean heads out straight away for Haas with a practice start before setting off around the 3.3 mile circuit.
16:00 And there we go, the green light goes on, FP2 is underway.
15:57 Just a few minutes until the lights go green for FP2. The sun is beaming down at Albert Park.
15:53 We knew Williams were struggling after testing, but those struggles appeared to be laid bare in FP1 with both cars over four seconds off the pace. Hopefully we will see some stronger times in FP2.
15:48 Toro Rosso should have Alexander Albon's car fixed in time for FP2. The debutant became the first driver to hit the barriers this season in FP1, but with a broken wing he was able to drive the car back to the pits.
15:43 As expected, the midfield was extremely tight in FP1, with four tenths of a second covering six teams. Will somebody be able to break away from that pack in FP2?
15:38 Max Verstappen added further support to the theory of a close top three in FP1, claiming P3 in his Red Bull, only 0.193s shy of Hamilton's time.
15:33 Lewis Hamilton set the pace earlier, claiming his fourth successive FP1 P1 in Melbourne. But, with Ferrari's duo under a tenth shy, he has a tough job on his hands to hold them off in FP2.
15:30 Hello and welcome back to Albert Park for the second practice session of this brand-spanking new Formula 1 season. FP2 gets underway in 30 minutes. All times are local.
13:32 That's it for now, join us in two hours for FP2. Cheers!
13:31 Vettel finishes second, 0.038s down while Leclerc is third. The top five are separated by a quarter of a second.
13:30 The chequered flag is out on FP1 with Hamilton claiming his fourth successive Friday FP1 P1 in Melbourne.
13:25 Five minutes remaining...
13:24 Kubica, Williams' best placed driver in 19th place, is two, I repeat two, seconds slower than 18th placed Lando Norris. This is not looking good for Williams.
13:19 Raikkonen is currently best of the rest in the Alfa Romeo. He is P6, 1.2s down on Hamilton's best.
13:16 Bottas has spun his W10 down an escape road and narrowly, and by that I mean by a the thickness of a piece of tissue paper, missed hitting the wall as he spun the car back around.
13:12 Hulkenberg is the first man out in his rebooted RS19.
13:11 Green light and we are back underway.
13:09 The red flags are out for Albon's shunt.
13:08 And we have our first crash of 2019, a minor one as Albon lost control of his STR14 and tagged the wall. There goes that new spec Toro Rosso front wing. He is able to get his car going and is heading back to the pits.
13:06 Ferrari join the party with Vettel up to second, 0.038s down on Hamilton and Leclerc in third, a further 0.04s down.
13:02 Verstappen splits the Mercedes drivers while we're still waiting for a hot one from Ferrari. Ricciardo stays 15th having to duck around a Haas, I think it is Grosjean, on his hot lap.
13:00 Purple in the first sector and again in the third and it is a 1:23.599 for Hamilton. That puts him 0.267s up on Bottas.
12:59 Russell is in trouble as he grinds to a halt on his way down the pit lane. His Williams mechanics are quickly on hand to get his car up onto a board and push it back to the garage.
12:58 But it is Bottas who is on a flier as he does a 1:23.866 to extend his advantage at the top.
12:57 New boots on and Grosjean goes P7 with Hulkenberg eighth.
12:53 The Haas lads leave the pits, practicing starts on their way out. Norris and Kvyat join the action while Albon needs a bit of help from his mechanics getting his car out of the garage without clipping the wall. Tight squeeze!
12:46 Renault have reportedly said it is an electronic issue that has kept Hulkenberg in the garage. The car is being reset and they hope to have him out on track soon.
12:40 Another moment of silence as all the drivers head back to the pits to return their first set of Pirellis to, well Pirelli.
12:38 Ricciardo's first lap in the Renault puts him P11, 1.8s off the pace. Still no sign of his team-mate Hulkenberg.
12:37 Verstappen is back ahead of Hamilton, Kvyat is up to fourth ahead of Stroll and Gasly, Leclerc, Magnussen, Vettel and Albon.
12:36 Bad news for Nico Hulkenberg as his car is up on the jacks as the team investigates an undisclosed issue with the RS19.
12:32 Hamilton, despite his flat-spotted medium tyres, has pipped Verstappen for second, 0.177s down on Bottas' best.
12:31 Only three drivers yet to set times: Hulkenberg, Ricciardo and Grosjean.
12:30 30 minutes in and it is still P1 for Bottas with a 1:24.679, Verstappen is second, 0.294s off the pace while Hamilton is third, a full second down.
12:28 Huge lock up for Hamilton and that's one set of tyres that have lost a bit rubber as they smoked their way through the corner.
12:27 Vettel is straight onto the red tyres but joins Kubica is running a bit wide so he finished up P5 after his first flying lap.
12:25 Hamilton goes second and Kubica falls to fourth... the Polish driver is visibly fighting his Williams, who doesn't seem to want to turn into the corners with the ease of its rivals.
12:24 Sainz goes second ahead of Kubica, Norris, Albon and Russell while both Ferraris and Hamilton are out on track.
12:21 Bottas, who has enjoyed finally getting to eat some food in his off-season, is the first man to post a lap time. A 1:26.454 for the fighting fit Finn.
12:18 Norris, Russell and Bottas leave the pits. Williams need all the running they can get today after losing two full days during pre-season testing as the build of their FW was delayed.
12:13 Installation laps out of the way so silence descends. New season same story as many of the bigger teams will wait for others to head out and clean the track.
12:05 A huge cheer from the crowd as Ricciardo heads out in his Renault RS19. The Aussie has a new helmet for this season that is causing a bit of a split amongst fans with its blue, pink and green colour scheme.
12:02 One by one the drivers head out for installation laps with Hamilton and Bottas the latest to leave the pits.
12:00 The first green light of the 2019 F1 season and the first car out on track, it is Raikkonen in the Alfa Romeo.
11:59 Ready? We are...
11:55 We are down to just three tyres for this year's championship, simply put red for soft, yellow for medium and white for hard.
11:49 Only Mercedes and Haas have retained their line ups from last season so we have: Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas; Ferrari with Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc; Red Bull with Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly; Renault with Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg; Haas have kept Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen; McLaren have an all new line up with Carlos Sainz and Norris; Racing Point have Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll; Sauber have signed Kimi Raikkonen and Giovinazzi while Toro Rosso have Kyvat and Albon and Williams have Kubica and Russell.
11:45 New faces today as George Russell, Alexander Albon and Lando Norris all make their F1 debuts while Robert Kubica, Daniil Kvyat and Antonio Giovinazzi are returning to the grid.
11:38 The FIA have announced that Michael Masi, the deputy race director of the Australian Supercars series, will take Whiting's role for this weekend's race. â??In accordance with Article 11.9.3b of the FIA International Sporting Code, the Sporting Regulations shall hereby be amended to reflect Mr Michael Masi as the Race Director, Safety Delegate and Permanent Starter for this Event," read a brief statement.
11:36 This year's championship gets underway with a heavy heart following the tragic passing of FIA race director Charlie Whiting on Thursday morning. The stalwart passed away in Melbourne after suffering a pulmonary embolism. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and all those who knew him.
11:30 Welcome to Melbourne, home of the Australian Grand Prix, the first race on the 2019 F1 calendar.
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:28.161 - 1
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:26.627 20.886 1
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:27.184 22.520 1
4 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:30.822 57.109 1
5 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:26.926 58.230 1
6 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:28.783 87.156 1
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:28.711 1 LAP 1
8 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:29.085 1 LAP 1
9 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:28.914 1 LAP 1
10 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:28.999 1 LAP 1
11 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 1:28.874 1 LAP 1
12 Lando Norris McLaren 1:31.074 1 LAP 1
13 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:31.061 1 LAP 1
14 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:31.073 1 LAP 1
15 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:29.322 1 LAP 1
16 George Russell Williams 1:31.271 2 LAPS 2
17 Robert Kubica Williams 1:30.551 3 LAPS 3
R Romain Grosjean Haas RETIRED 1
R Daniel Ricciardo Renault RETIRED 2
R Carlos Sainz McLaren RETIRED 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:20.486 0
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:20.598 0.112 0
3 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:21.190 0.704 0
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:21.320 0.834 0
5 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:21.442 0.956 0
6 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:21.826 1.340 0
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:22.099 1.613 0
8 Lando Norris McLaren 1:22.304 1.818 0
9 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:22.314 1.828 0
10 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:22.781 2.295 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:21.014 0
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:21.193 0.179 0
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:21.678 0.664 0
4 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:21.739 0.725 0
5 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:21.870 0.856 0
6 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:21.912 0.898 0
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:22.221 1.207 0
8 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:22.349 1.335 0
9 Lando Norris McLaren 1:22.423 1.409 0
10 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:22.532 1.518 0
11 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:22.562 1.548 0
12 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:22.570 1.556 0
13 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:22.636 1.622 0
14 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:22.714 1.700 0
15 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:22.774 1.760 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:22.017 0
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:22.043 0.026 0
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:22.367 0.350 0
4 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:22.431 0.414 0
5 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:22.511 0.494 0
6 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:22.519 0.502 0
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:22.540 0.523 0
8 Lando Norris McLaren 1:22.702 0.685 0
9 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:22.757 0.740 0
10 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:22.876 0.859 0
11 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:22.885 0.868 0
12 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:22.908 0.891 0
13 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:22.921 0.904 0
14 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:22.959 0.942 0
15 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:22.966 0.949 0
16 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:23.017 1.000 0
17 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 1:23.020 1.003 0
18 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1:23.084 1.067 0
19 George Russell Williams 1:24.360 2.343 0
20 Robert Kubica Williams 1:26.067 4.050 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:22.292 0
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:22.556 0.264 0
3 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:22.749 0.457 0
4 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:23.112 0.820 0
5 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:23.334 1.042 0
6 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 1:23.367 1.075 0
7 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:23.422 1.130 0
8 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:23.442 1.150 0
9 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:23.481 1.189 0
10 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:23.695 1.403 0
11 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:23.737 1.445 0
12 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:23.831 1.539 0
13 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1:24.049 1.757 0
14 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:24.082 1.790 0
15 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:24.328 2.036 0
16 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:24.345 2.053 0
17 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:24.402 2.110 0
18 Lando Norris McLaren 1:24.568 2.276 0
19 George Russell Williams 1:25.944 3.652 0
20 Robert Kubica Williams 1:26.589 4.297 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:22.600 0
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:22.648 0.048 0
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:23.400 0.800 0
4 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 1:23.442 0.842 0
5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:23.473 0.873 0
6 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:23.572 0.972 0
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:23.574 0.974 0
8 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:23.644 1.044 0
9 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:23.754 1.154 0
10 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:23.814 1.214 0
11 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:23.933 1.333 0
12 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:23.988 1.388 0
13 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:24.011 1.411 0
14 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1:24.133 1.533 0
15 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:24.293 1.693 0
16 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:24.401 1.801 0
17 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:24.675 2.075 0
18 Lando Norris McLaren 1:24.733 2.133 0
19 George Russell Williams 1:26.453 3.853 0
20 Robert Kubica Williams 1:26.655 4.055 0
Driver Standings
#DriverTeamTimeGapPits
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:23.599 0
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:23.637 0.038 0
3 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:23.673 0.074 0
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:23.792 0.193 0
5 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:23.866 0.267 0
6 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo Racing 1:24.816 1.217 0
7 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:24.832 1.233 0
8 Pierre Gasly Red Bull 1:24.932 1.333 0
9 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:24.934 1.335 0
10 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:25.015 1.416 0
11 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing 1:25.166 1.567 0
12 Romain Grosjean Haas 1:25.224 1.625 0
13 Alex Albon Toro Rosso 1:25.230 1.631 0
14 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1:25.285 1.686 0
15 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:25.288 1.689 0
16 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1:25.498 1.899 0
17 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:25.634 2.035 0
18 Lando Norris McLaren 1:25.966 2.367 0
19 Robert Kubica Williams 1:27.914 4.315 0
20 George Russell Williams 1:28.740 5.141 0
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