Hamilton, Russell and Vesti took the Mercedes W13 for its last ride

Source: Mercedes F1 Twitter

Lewis Hamilton, George Russell and Mercedes junior driver Frederick Vesti took the W13 for its last drive at the Abu Dhabi Pirelli post-season test.

On Wednesday the W13 performed its last official duties at the Abu Dhabi Pirelli post-season test.

During the session Lewis Hamilton ran 67 laps with a best time of 1:26.750, the 17th fastest in the session. George Russell ran 73 laps with a best time of 1:27.240, which was the 23rd fastest time.

Mercedes junior Frederick Vesti also got the opportunity to drive the W13 for 124 laps, with a best time of of 1:27.216 , the 22nd fastest time.

After his first ever F1 test, Vesti was overjoyed.

“My first test in an F1 car has been the most incredible day, no words can truly describe how awesome it was!” he said.

“I want to thank Mercedes for giving me this opportunity. Driving 260 kph through the high-speed corners and experiencing 5G in the neck… The forces a Formula 1 car produces are remarkable.

“I’ve done 124 laps today learning the car and running on different compounds, so a massive amount of driving.

“To get this opportunity has been hugely important and will help with my next step in Formula 2 as well as my work in the F1 sim.

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“Hopefully I’ll be driving an F1 car again soon and a big thank you to Mercedes for the chance,” Vesti concluded.

Mercedes’ Trackside Engineering Director Andrew Shovlin also gave his comments on the session.

“We had George and Lewis splitting the running in one car today while Fred was driving the other car all day,” said the Briton.

“George was in the car this morning and Lewis then took over this afternoon.

“Fred has been doing a lot of simulator work for us over the past year or so, but today was his first opportunity to see how the real car compares to the virtual one.

“He had a faultless day, managed to avoid any mistakes and looked to have had a lot of fun.

“As Pirelli also supplied the 2023 tyres for the young driver’s car, we were also able to accelerate our learning by running through a programme with Fred.

“Overall, it was a successful test and we’ve covered nearly 1,500 kilometres. It’s been a useful day collecting a lot of data that we can now analyse ahead of next year,” Shovlin concluded.

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