Ferrari’s Leclerc sets the pace in final practice as Vettel crashes out

Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc set the fastest time in final practice for the Monaco Grand Prix as team-mate Sebastian Vettel crashed out.

Monegasque Leclerc edged out Valtteri Bottas by 0.053 seconds, with Lewis Hamilton in third, two tenths down.

Mercedes dominated practice in Monte Carlo on Thursday, but Leclerc’s pace on Saturday morning will provide Ferrari with hope that they can take the fight to the Silver Arrows in the shootout for pole position later.

Vettel’s final running before qualifying ended in the barriers.

The four-time world champion had completed just seven laps when he lost control of his Ferrari under braking for the opening Sainte Devote corner.

Vettel locked up his front-left tyre and slammed into the barrier, sustaining damage to the front of his Ferrari.

The German walked away unscathed from the accident, but his Ferrari mechanics will face a race to get his car ready for qualifying.

The Mercedes cars are running a red halo in tribute to Niki Lauda, their non-executive chairman who died, aged 70, on Monday.

It was confirmed on Friday night that a one-minute silence in the Austrian’s honour will be staged on the grid before Sunday’s race.

Formula One fans pay tribute to Niki Lauda at the Monaco Grand Prix (Luca Bruno/AP).
Formula One fans pay tribute to Niki Lauda at the Monaco Grand Prix (Luca Bruno/AP).

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen finished fourth ahead of his team-mate Pierre Gasly.

British teenager Lando Norris was 16th, one place behind Carlos Sainz in the sister McLaren.

George Russell propped up the time sheets, three seconds off the pace.

- Press Association

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