Mexico City - Max Verstappen completed a clean sweep of all
three practice sessions for the Mexican Grand Prix on Saturday when he topped
the times for Red Bull in the morning's final runout.
The 21-year-old Dutchman, who is bidding to become the
youngest pole sitter in the sport's history, was fastest with a best lap in one
minute and 16.284 seconds, outpacing championship leader Lewis Hamilton of
Mercedes by two-tenths of a second.
Hamilton, who can clinch his fifth drivers' title on Sunday
if he outscores Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel by five points, or if Vettel fails
to win, showed much improved form in the cooler, but damp conditions after
struggling to seventh on Friday.
Vettel was third-fastest, two-hundredths of a second behind
Hamilton, ahead of Daniel Ricciardo in the second Red Bull and Kimi Raikkonen,
victorious in Texas last weekend, fifth in the second Ferrari.
Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas was forced to
pull up after a hydraulics failure, leaving his team facing a stressful two
hours to repair and prepare his car for qualifying.
Charles Leclerc was sixth for Sauber ahead of Carlos Sainz
of Renault, Pierre Gasly of Toro Rosso, Marcus Ericsson of Sauber and Nico
Hulkenberg in the second Renault.
Bottas ended up 19th ahead of Kevin Magnussen of Haas who
did not clock a lap time because his car required an intercooler change.
Gasly will start Sunday's race from the back of the grid
following an engine and gearbox change.