Two-time Singapore Grand Prix winner Fernando Alonso, ended up quicker. Mercedes looked like they were sandbagging, but that’s nevertheless an impressive performance from Alonso and indeed Daniel Ricciardo who was 0.051 seconds further back.
Alonso’s time of 1:47.299 seconds at the Marina Bay circuit was just five hundredths of a second faster than Ricciardo, with Nico Rosberg a further tenth back.
The pace of the Ferraris and Red Bulls suggested they could challenge the Mercedes drivers – who have taken all but one pole position this season – in qualifying later in the evening in F1’s original night race.
Rosberg’s teammate and championship rival Lewis Hamilton was sixth, separated by Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne and Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel, who has won the past three races in Singapore.
There was improvement from the Williams drivers, who were well off the pace on Friday. Felipe Massa was seventh, ahead of teammate Valtteri Bottas.
The top seven drivers were separated by only six tenths of a second despite the Marina Bay lap being one of the longest in F1.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was ninth on the timesheets, with Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez rounding out the top 10.