Grosjean breaks Red Bull dominance in Hungary

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Romain Grosjean ended Red Bull’s clean sweep of the timesheets in practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix by finishing quickest in FP3 on Saturday morning at the Hungaroring.

The Lotus driver took advantage of the warm track conditions to post the fastest lap in the dying stages of the session as the teams switched to the soft tire in order to practise for qualifying following their fuelled runs on the harder compound, with Lewis Hamilton impressing many during this part of the session.

Red Bull, who had sealed 1-2 finishes in both FP1 and FP2, failed to repeat their form as Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber could only manage 4th and 7th respectively. Vettel’s closest challenger in the drivers’ championship, Fernando Alonso, ran well on the soft tire to finish P2 behind Grosjean with his Ferrari teammate Felipe Massa finishing 5th.

Sergio Perez produced a good performance to finish 3rd but his session came to an end with a couple of minutes remaining after a crash at turn eleven that saw him finish in the wall, leaving McLaren with a busy two hour period before qualifying later today. However, the problems were even worse for Perez’s compatriot, Esteban Gutierrez, who failed to set a time due to a gearbox due to an engine issue.

Qualifying begins at 8am live on NBC Sports Network.

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”