Carlos Sainz brought out red flags halfway through the hour when he dipped a tyre on the chicane at the Ascari chicane before thumping into the barriers, heavily damaging his car and spinning around.

Although the Spaniard was given a preliminary all-clear after medical checks but Ferrari face a big repair job on his car ahead of the F1 Sprint, the 18-lap dash around the Monza circuit that will set the grid for Sunday’s Italian GP.

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However, Hamilton will go into that Sprint – which is live on Sky Sports F1 at 3.30pm, with build-up from 2.25pm, as the favorite after showing his pace in Practice Two, which essentially was long-run practice for the drivers.

Valtteri Bottas, who will line up ahead of Hamilton on the front row later today but faces a back-of-the-grid start with an engine penalty for Sunday’s race, was second in practice, two-tenths off the pace.

Meanwhile, Albeit on the slower medium tyre, Max Verstappen was 0.4s back – a margin has been apparent all weekend between Mercedes and Red Bull – in third, where he will start the Sprint.The championship leader finished just ahead of team-mate Sergio Perez, who faces a comeback mission from ninth on the grid come 3.30pm. Esteban Ocon finished fifth ahead of Robert Kubica in the Alfa Romeo, who were seemingly pushing harder than most.

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