F1 Testing: Charles Leclerc finishes F1 2018 on top for Ferrari
Final track day of F1 2018; Leclerc, Gasly and Sainz made official debuts for 2019 teams in Ferrari, Red Bull and McLaren
By Matt Morlidge
Last Updated: 28/11/18 5:26pm
Charles Leclerc enjoyed a successful first test as an official Ferrari driver as he closed the F1 2018 season on top in Abu Dhabi.
Leclerc will become the Scuderia's second-youngest driver in history when he makes his race debut for the team next season, and he completed 135 laps on his first and final day in the 2018 car at the post-season test.
What's more, Leclerc's time - a 1:36.450 on 2019 hypersoft tyres, was quicker than new team-mate Sebastian Vettel's from Day One.
"Of course it was emotional," said Leclerc. "Because driving a Ferrari is special and because this was a day I had been waiting for, for so long without being sure if it would ever happen.
"I can't wait for next season to start."
The Monegasque driver, who had a superb rookie season at Sauber, was one of several drivers testing for his new team as Pirelli's tyre compounds for next year were put to work.
Leclerc finished ahead of Pierre Gasly on the final track day of the 2018 season, with the Frenchman making his official bow for Red Bull as he prepares to replace Daniel Ricciardo.
Lance Stroll, not officially announced at Force India but in the car for the second day in a row, was third.
There were other drivers debuting in team colours, too.
Having been dropped by Gasly's former team just over a year ago, Daniil Kvyat was making what is technically his third debut for Toro Rosso on Day Two ahead of his full-time return to the F1 grid.
Kvyat completed the most amount of laps on the day, with 155.
Carlos Sainz, replacing Fernando Alonso at McLaren, was also in action for his new team, driving the MCL33 at the Yas Marina circuit.
Antonio Giovinazzi (Sauber) as well as Robert Kubica and George Russell (both Williams) were the other drivers offering a glimpse of F1 2019.
But there are also some unfamiliar names in action, with Louis Deletraz making his testing debut for Haas while Artem Markelov is running in the Haas - both are F2 proteges.
Valtteri Bottas, meanwhile, rounded off his difficult season with another day in the Mercedes.
The next time the drivers will get in an F1 car will be Barcelona's pre-season tests.
Abu Dhabi post-season test, Day Two timesheet
|1) Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||135||2019 hypersofts||1:36.450|
|2) Pierre Gasly||Red Bull||129||2019 hypersofts||1:36.916|
|3) Lance Stroll||Force India||122||2018 hypersofts||1:38.044|
|4) Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||143||2019 hypersofts||1:38.448|
|5) Carlos Sainz||McLaren||150||2019 hypersofts||1:38.547|
|6) Artem Markelov||Renault||129||2018 hypersofts||1:38.590|
|7) George Russell||Williams||38||2018 hypersofts||1:38.802|
|8) Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||155||2019 hypersofts||1:38.862|
|9) Louis Deletraz||Haas||117||2019 hypersofts||1:39.069|
|10) Robert Kubica||Williams||56||2018 hypersofts||1:40.265|
|11) Antonio Giovinazzi||Sauber||128||2019 hypersofts||1:40.435|
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