The drivers’ only opportunity to gain some crucial track time ahead of Qualifying proved to be a serene affair compared to Saturday’s session, as Nyck de Vries topped the timing sheets.
De Vries went quickest with a 1:21.492 to put his Mercedes EQ over a tenth ahead of DS Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne and Oliver Rowland, who has looked competitive all weekend.
Raining following yesterday’s race meant that track conditions were not as grippy as expected, although the session was incident-free.
Rowland initially set the pace clocking in a 1:24.067 for Nissan e.dams. Yet it was Frijns who set the benchmark halfway through practice with a 1:23.05 to go ahead of Rowland and yesterday’s second-place finisher Rene Rast.
Drivers then flocked to set their 250kW laps with five minutes remaining. ROKiT Venturi’s Norman Nato led the way momentarily, as de Vries went 0.635s quicker on a 1:21.492 lap.
The Dutchman eventually finished the session fastest, ahead of Vergne and Rowland, despite Vergne being quicker in both the first and second sectors.
Rookie Nick Cassidy closed the session in fourth, with Mitch Evans slotting into fifth after the Jaguar driver made a short trip across the grass at Turn 7.
Third-place finisher yesterday Edoardo Mortara led his ROKiT Venturi teammate Norman Nato in seventh and eighth, respectively.
Rast could only manage ninth and experienced a major spin early in the session and was lucky to have avoided the barriers. His compatriot Andre Lotterer, who was disqualified from Round 8’s race after a technical infraction, rounded out the top 10.
Further back, Pascal Wehrlein was 14th quickest and will be looking to make amends after being frustrated following his disqualification yesterday for failing to declare the correct tyres.
He was just in front of championship contenders Antonio Felix da Costa and Robin Frijns, as the pair finished in 15th and 16th place.
Several drivers failed to set representative lap times towards the end of the session, so it will all still be to play for heading in Qualifying in just over an hour’s time.