Barcelona Practice 2: Vettel marginally faster than Alonso and Webber

Sebastian Vettel  on top at the end of day one in Spain

Sebastian Vettel on top at the end of day one in Spain

After a quiet morning, Red Bull Racing and Sebastian Vettel rose to the top in the afternoon at the Circuit de Catalunya. With the track properly dry and temperatures rising, Vettel wasted no time in exiting the pitlane when the light turned green. He was followed by most of the field, with 19 cars on track within the first five minutes. He started on the experimental hard tyre, others followed with a mix of that and the standard version. Lap times were soon much quicker than those set in the morning, with Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg leading the way with a 1:23.801 at the 15 minute mark. Team-mate Lewis Hamilton faired less well, spinning his car onto the kerbs at Turn 11.

Medium tyres came out early than usual with Webber taking a second out of Rosberg’s time on his first run shortly after the half-hour point. Webber was shortly toppled though, as Vettel beat him by hundredths with 1:22.808 just before the half-way point, and Fernando Alonso slipped his Ferrari in between the Red Bull pair.

With many drivers settling into long runs in the second half of the session, the order at the top stayed largely static to the flag. Kimi Räikkönen was fourth for Lotus ahead of Felipe Massa in the second Ferrari. Then came Hamilton and Rosberg. They were followed by Adrian Sutil for Force India eighth, Jean-Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso ninth and Paul di Resta in the second Force India tenth. Di Resta retired his car with 20 minutes of the session remaining, parking by the pitlane exit after a tyre failure damaged his bodywork.

No such troubles for Vettel though, the World Champion ran to the flag. Speaking afterwards he professed himself happy with the afternoon but also suggested the developments to his car this week are not as significant as has been made out. “We have some new parts here but the days of big, big upgrades don’t really happen now with the regulations how they are,” he said. “This afternoon was fairly conclusive, but this morning wasn’t really much good with the weather.”

Spanish Grand Prix, Free Practice 2 – Friday, 10 May 2013

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:22.808 34
2 3 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:22.825 0.017 35
3 2 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:22.891 0.083 36
4 7 Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 1:23.030 0.222 32
5 4 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:23.110 0.302 37
6 10 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:23.140 0.332 35
7 9 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:23.398 0.590 45
8 15 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:23.840 1.032 37
9 18 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Ferrari 1:24.058 1.250 31
10 14 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1:24.104 1.296 25
11 19 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 1:24.175 1.367 32
12 5 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.306 1.498 35
13 6 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.854 2.046 31
14 17 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1:24.888 2.080 38
15 11 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1:25.167 2.359 38
16 16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1:25.321 2.513 32
17 12 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1:25.441 2.633 37
18 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:25.851 3.043 36
19 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1:25.963 3.155 30
20 22 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1:26.078 3.270 31
21 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1:26.930 4.122 35
22 23 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1:26.970 4.162 26
  • ddd

    Mercedes started their usual nosedive when coming to Europe, as predicted.

    All those “see Hamilton made the right choice, you all eat humble pie” are about to wake up out of their honeymoon dream.

  • Not Bernie

    Friday practice times are terribly meaningless. It’s nice to know that the cars can go that quick, but it’s only in qualifying does it count. And even that’s not anywhere near as important as the race.

    Hence why practice times can’t be relied upon.

  • Tamburello_1994

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Sunday’s grid looked like this.

  • L

    Not Bernie, the race pace is being tested on Friday, 2nd practice and that usually is a very good indicication of Sunday race pace. Unless one of the teams does something very bad or miraculous on Saturday setups. Or huge weather changes which is not on the table in the forecasts.

  • not ddd

    with all due respect, hamilton is still faster than the mclaens’

  • Tony

    McLaren need to get rid of that Sam Micheal… Talk about F1 needing Ferrari.. It’s pretty grim without McLaren too. F1 just not good without McLaren. Explains poor Silverstone ticket sales anyway.