Kimi Raikkonen followed new Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel’s lead as he went fastest early on in day three of pre-season testing in Jerez on Tuesday.

The Finn was the last man to deliver a world title for the Italian giants back in 2007 and hopes will be rising in Maranello ahead of the new season after the new SF15-T went fastest for the third consecutive day.

Raikkonen was almost four seconds down on the fastest time set by Vettel on Monday, but his best of 1min 24.074 in 44 laps still led the field.

Double world champions Mercedes continued to lead the way in mileage as Nico Rosberg racked up 93 laps to add to his world record 157 lap effort on day one.

However, it wasn’t all plain sailing for the German as his W08 had to be towed back to the garage after stopping on the track shortly before lunch.

McLaren-Honda may have been the happiest team on Tuesday, though, as after a difficult first couple of days in which Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button managed just six laps apiece, Alonso was able to log 32 laps, albeit at the slowest pace on the grid over 11 seconds back on Raikkonen.

Rookies Felipe Nasr and Carlos Sainz also got some valuable time in their respective Sauber and Toro Rosso cars.

Nasr, who was second fastest on Monday, had to settle for third behind Raikkonen and Rosberg on his 38 laps.

Meanwhile, Sainz gave the Spanish fans more to see than the home hero Alonso as he completed over 50 laps in going fourth fastest. – Agence France-Presse

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