Valtteri Bottas fastest ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in final practice in Baku

The Ferraris and the Red Bulls were quick on to the track, but a Mercedes was the quickest around it – Lewis Hamilton leading the way.”I think yesterday I said it was “a badass mother” because it can be a badass mother”. Räikkönen will line up third ahead of team-mate Sebastian Vettel, the pair more than a second adrift.It has already been some journey.The Spaniard, out of contract with McLaren at the end of the season, will start last. “I’ve got an incredible team around me and a great boss who enables me to have part time for other interests which keep me going”.The team have new regulations to stick to this season, and so teams are still working on the vehicles to better develop them.”I was very quick there past year, but I just didn’t deliver”, said Hamilton. But then I would probably look back and realise that I would not be racing a Formula One vehicle.”I’m sure everyone would take the ultra-soft if you could choose but those are the tyres for everyone”. I feel like I have more potential, and I feel like it’s a constant journey to discover just what that potential is. “I’m really enjoying the fight we have with Ferrari and admiring them for the strong competition”.McLaren are in their third year of a long-term contract with Honda, but are the only team without a single point to their name this season following a terrible start to the new campaign. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) – 93 points 4.He arrives in Baku with team boss Toto Wolff’s praise endorsing his behaviour and performances.”It is lacking grip because it is a street circuit and having the tyres in the right window so they can generate grip – it all needs to come together”, he said.Palmer however, will take some joy from the fact that he will not occupy the final row following yet another troublesome weekend for McLaren in another troublesome year. “It appeared Mercedes had understood going to Canada what was troubling them at Monaco”, he said. “This circuit is a tough one, and we had a few challenges that we tried to work through today”.”We’ve clearly still got lots of work to do ahead of qualifying, but Valtteri’s time in second practice looked promising, so there is obviously pace in the vehicle, which is encouraging”.And, although Verstappen set the fastest times in both sessions on Friday, the Dutchman ended the afternoon in the wall at turn one on an otherwise impressive day for his Red Bull team.Both McLarens were eliminated in Q1 but will start from the back of the grid due to engine penalties, while Jolyon Palmer is likely to start from the pit lane after an engine fire in FP3 scuppered his hopes of taking part in qualifying.