Nurburgring Practice 3: Vettel versus Rosberg scene is set

Sebastian Vettel fastest in FP3 at Nurburgring

Sebastian Vettel fastest in FP3 at Nurburgring

The two homeboys – Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg – look set to slug it for the remainder of the German Grand Prix weekend as the pair topped the timing sheets at the end of the third and final free practice, ahead of the all important afternoon qualifying session.

Vettel was in fine form in his Red Bull as he powered around the Nurburgring in a time of 1:29.517 seconds, which was a whopping 0.676 seconds up on Mercedes’ Rosberg and almost a full second up on his best lap time 24 hours earlier.

With it the German sent out a clear signal to his rivals; he seriously wants to win his home grand prix – a feat he has yet to accomplish in his distinguished career.

Mark Webber, in the sister Red Bull, was third fastest but only fractionally down on Rosberg which suggests that the energy drinks boys have the edge going into qualifying.

Nico Rosberg second fastest in FP3

Nico Rosberg second fastest in FP3

Ferrari have plugged away at getting their F138 up to speed, recovering nicely after a frustrating first day with Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa fourth and fifth quickest respectively.

Also in the zone were the Lotus pair with Kimi Raikkonen sixth and teammate Romain Grosjean eighth.

With the weather set to get warmer – indeed, a heatwave is predicted by local experts, which should suit Ferrari and Lotus.

Out of sorts and apparently going backwards, since he topped FP1 on Friday morning, was Lewis Hamilton who split the black and gold cars on the timing screens with the seventh best time. He was 1.227 adrift of his Mercedes teammate.

Nico Rosberg was ninth fastest in the Sauber, and no doubt brought some cheer to the Swiss outfit whose weekend has been clouded by revelations of financial doom and gloom.

Fernando Alonso was fourth fastest in FP3

Fernando Alonso was fourth fastest in FP3

Rounding out the top ten was Adrian Sutil in the Force India, with teammate Paul di Resta 13th.

After a promising start to the weekend, Jenson Button dipped back into what has become his ‘normal’ position (this season) just outside the top ten in the McLaren – in this instance 11th. Teammate Sergio Perez was 15th.

Good news on the tyre front is that no Pirelli went ‘poof’ during the course of four hours of running at the Nurburgring, suggesting that the Silverstone explosion problems are a thing of the past… (GP247)

Subbed by AJN.

German Grand Prix, Free practice 3 – Saturday, 6 July 2013

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:29.517 19
2 9 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:30.193 0.676 19
3 2 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:30.211 0.694 18
4 3 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:30.621 1.104 16
5 4 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:30.639 1.122 17
6 7 Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 1:30.671 1.154 19
7 10 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:30.744 1.227 20
8 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:30.781 1.264 18
9 11 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1:30.966 1.449 20
10 15 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:31.009 1.492 18
11 5 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:31.326 1.809 22
12 12 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1:31.405 1.888 20
13 14 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1:31.733 2.216 21
14 18 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Ferrari 1:31.855 2.338 18
15 6 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1:31.855 2.338 23
16 19 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 1:31.898 2.381 19
17 16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1:31.969 2.452 20
18 17 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1:32.036 2.519 23
19 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1:33.230 3.713 19
20 22 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1:33.470 3.953 22
21 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1:33.964 4.447 21
22 23 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1:34.683 5.166 20
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  • zaid rachid

    ?? ??? ??????? ????? ????? ?????

  • grat

    Nico Rosberg was in the Sauber?!? What was he doing there?