Daniel Ricciardo sprung to the top of the time screens to lead the final morning session of pre-season testing in Barcelona.
The Renault driver’s 1m16.276 hot lap on the C5 tyre, which was the second fastest time overall since the start of testing, edged Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc by 0.087s while Lewis Hamilton was 0.134s adrift from the Aussie.
A string of fast laps were posted in the final hour of the morning segment, reshuffling the positions at the top as drivers tested their car’s qualifying spec in combination with Pirelli’s soft C5 tyre.
Hamilton logged in the most miles overall with a tally of 86 laps.
Racing Point’s Sergio Perez clocked in fourth before the break, but the Mexican was the only driver among the top-5 to set his time on the harder C3 tyre, a performance that confirmed once again the outright pace of the Silverstone-based squad’s RP20.
But along with Williams’ George Russell, Perez was at the bottom of the mileage chart, putting 43 laps under his belt.
Carlos Sainz was the session’s early leader, the McLaren driver heading into the lunch break fifth in the pecking order.
All drivers, with the exception of Alfa’s Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull Alex Albon, posted times that were within the same second.
Albon’s morning was marked by a mishap at Turn 12 when the British-Thai racer lost the rear of his RB16 and veered into the gravel trap. But the Red Bull driver managed to extricate himself and haul his RB16 back to the garage.