Hamilton completes his clean sweep in Hungary FP3

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Lewis Hamilton has completed his clean sweep of the practice sessions for the Hungarian Grand Prix by finishing fastest in FP3 on Saturday morning in Budapest.

The Briton posted a best lap time of 1:24.048 to finish less than one-tenth of a second clear of Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg at the top of the timesheets. The world championship leader was forced to settle for second place behind Hamilton for the third time this weekend, but will be hoping for a reversal in fortunes later today in qualifying.

The final one hour practice session saw the drivers and teams complete their final system checks and setup changes ahead of qualifying, and it came as little surprise to see the Silver Arrows dominating proceedings once again. Both Hamilton and Rosberg complained about minor issues on their cars following Friday’s sessions, but these appear to have been resolved.

Sebastian Vettel’s belief that Red Bull is a step closer to Mercedes in Hungary was underpinned by a good result for the team in FP3. Vettel finished third with teammate Daniel Ricciardo in fourth place. Valtteri Bottas showed signs of improvement for Williams after a quiet Friday, coming home in fifth.

Ferrari was once again battling inside the top ten with Fernando Alonso in sixth place ahead of Kimi Raikkonen. Kevin Magnussen finished eighth for McLaren, with the two Toro Rossos of Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniil Kvyat rounding out the top ten.

Qualifying takes place at 8am ET and is live on CNBC and Live Extra. Will Hamilton continue to dominate in Hungary, or could Rosberg spring a surprise? Join us then to find out.

Formula One: Recapping the past week’s news

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While the FIA Formula 1 World Championship is still two months away from beginning its 2018 season, this past week did bring about news items that filled out the 2018 grid and shed some light on individual team and car launches as the season-opening Australian Grand Prix draws closer.

Below is a recap of F1 news from this past week:

Williams Signs Sirotkin for 2018 Drive, Names Kubica as Reserve Driver

The saga of the second seat at Williams Martini Racing was finally resolved early on in the week, with former Renault Sport F1 Team test driver Sergey Sirotkin officially confirmed as a teammate to the incumbent Lance Stroll in 2018.

The announcement concluded months of speculation that saw multiple drivers test for the team in an auditioning capacity. Most notably, Robert Kubica looked to be a main contender for the seat before Sirotkin emerged as the favorite.

However, Kubica, who has not raced in Formula 1 since a devastating rally accident in 2011 left him with brutal injuries to his right arm, was named as a reserve and development driver for the team.

This announcement also completes the 2018 Formula 1 driver lineup, with all 11 teams having their seats now filled. Among those who were left without F1 drives are Paul Di Resta, who drove for Williams at the Hungarian Grand Prix in relief of Felipe Massa and even tested with them during the Winter months, and Antonio Giovinazzi, who filled in for Pascal Wehrlein at the Australian and Chinese Grands Prix.

Former Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Toro Rosso driver Daniil Kvyat is also without a race seat for 2018, but did sign on with Scuderia Ferrari as a development driver.

Mercedes, McLaren Reveal Dates for Their 2018 Car Launches

While most teams have not yet released dates for when their 2018 cars will be publicly launched, three notables have.

Mercedes AMG Petronas will introduce its 2018 challenger on February 22nd, the same day Ferrari is doing so, while McLaren will unveil its car one day later on the 23rd.

Testing will commence on February 26th at Circuit de Catalunya.

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