Practice 3: Webber tops as Red Bull emerge from engine map saga

Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB8. Formula One World Championship, Rd11, Hungarian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Budapest, Hungary, Friday 27 July 2012.

Mark Webber was fastest in FP3

Jul.28 (GP247)  Red Bull put behind them all the talk of engine torque maps and pedal torque maps, as Mark Webber ended the final free practice session of the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend top of the timing screens with teammate Sebastian Vettel third quickest, the pair split by Lewis Hamilton in the McLaren.

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4-27. Formula One World Championship, Rd11, Hungarian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Budapest, Hungary, Friday 27 July 2012.There was little to separate the top trio, with Webber’s best time 1 minute 21.550 seconds a mere 0.093 seconds up on Hamilton and Vettel 0.121 seconds adrift of the top time.

For Red Bull it will have come as a mighty relief that the clampdown on the controversial torque mapping on the RB8 has, what appears to be, minimal impact on their drivers – at least on the twisty, slippery Hungaroring circuit – despite below par pace on the first day which led to speculation that they were to feel a major impact in the aftermath of the clampdown.

Hamilton on the other hand was best of all in FP1 and FP2, and in truth not far off the top pace in the session preceding qualifying. The McLaren driver looking sure to be a major factor on race day.

Enjoying one of his better weekends (at least in the practice sessions) is Bruno Senna who ended the session fourth fastest, while Williams teammate Pastor Maldonado was down in 11th.

Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Lotus E20. Formula One World Championship, Rd11, Hungarian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Budapest, Hungary, Friday 27 July 2012.Championship points leader Fernando Alonso was fifth quickest in the Ferrari, ahead of the Lotus pair Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean seventh and eighth respectively. Both the black and gold cars showing strong all around pace prompting predictions that this could well be their weekend…

Ferrari’s Felipe Massa was eighth fastest, with Mercedes powered pair Paul di Resta (Force India) and Jenson Button (McLaren) ninth and tenth on the timing screens.

Incredibly the top 15 drivers were covered by a second – make that 1.047 seconds – implying an immense battle to get into Q3 and of course the all important top spot on the grid.

Hungarian Grand Prix, Free Practice 3 – Saturday, 28 July 2012

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 2 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:21.550 27
2 4 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:21.643 0.093 17
3 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:21.671 0.121 29
4 19 Bruno Senna Williams-Renault 1:21.876 0.326 22
5 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:21.884 0.334 13
6 9 Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 1:21.953 0.403 20
7 10 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:22.110 0.560 24
8 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:22.136 0.586 15
9 11 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1:22.191 0.641 20
10 3 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:22.233 0.683 24
11 18 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1:22.381 0.831 21
12 14 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:22.387 0.837 20
13 17 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Ferrari 1:22.492 0.942 26
14 12 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:22.530 0.980 25
15 15 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1:22.597 1.047 23
16 16 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 1:22.716 1.166 24
17 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:22.868 1.318 30
18 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:22.931 1.381 30
19 20 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham-Renault 1:24.036 2.486 20
20 21 Vitaly Petrov Caterham-Renault 1:24.547 2.997 18
21 25 Charles Pic Marussia-Cosworth 1:25.224 3.674 22
22 24 Timo Glock Marussia-Cosworth 1:25.497 3.947 21
23 22 Pedro de la Rosa HRT-Cosworth 1:26.785 5.235 20
24 23 Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1:26.898 5.348 26