MELBOURNE, March 23, 2017 - Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland poses for the portrait session ahead of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix in Melbourne, Australia, ...(Image Source: Xinhua/Bai Xue/IANS)

Le Castellet (France), June 23 : Formula One driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland (Mercedes) set the pace on Saturday in a short and rainy third free practice for the French Grand Prix.

The rain made its appearance just five minutes into the third free practice at the Paul Ricard circuit, which on Sunday is to host the French GP for the first time in 28 years, reports Efe.

In his best lap before the rain, Bottas clocked in at one minute and 33.666 seconds, while his British teammate Lewis Hamilton came 12th, 7.077 seconds off the pace, after having set the pace in the first two free practices.

Spain's Carlos Sainz (Renault) came second in one minute 34.953 seconds, ahead of Charles Leclerc of Monaco (Sauber Ferrari), who recorded one minute 35.012 seconds.

The International Automobile Federation (FIA) had allowed the teams an additional set of rain tires if needed in the first two practice sessions, but not in the third, because their forecasts did not call for rain Saturday.


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