In the Formula 1 final training session in Imola with two red flags, McLaren driver Oscar Piastri surprisingly secured the fastest time.

The Australian relegated his teammate Lando Norris to second place at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari. Before qualifying, Carlos Sainz finished third in the Ferrari. World champion Max Verstappen once again failed to make it to the top. After a disappointing opening day, the Red Bull driver had to settle for sixth place. Haas driver Nico H├╝lkenberg finished tenth.

The series of spins into the gravel bed continued in the final training session. Fernando Alonso lost control of his Aston Martin in the Rivazza and slid into the barriers, the session was temporarily interrupted. The two-time world champion quickly gave the all-clear and was able to get out of his car on his own. Alonso was then compulsorily examined by a doctor.

A few minutes before the end of the one-hour session, Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez was also hit. The Mexican slipped into the gravel in the Alta variant and demolished the front wing of the Red Bull. Red flags were waved again, but the unit was restarted.

Verstappen still has a lot of room for improvement in Imola. “It was difficult to find a good balance, I just didn’t feel really comfortable in the car,” the 26-year-old complained after the first two sessions and ultimately seventh place on Friday. With gallows humor he added: “I don’t think it can get any worse.” Things didn’t get much better on Saturday afternoon.