Vettel outpaces the field in Indian GP practice

Sebastian Vettel leads a charge of the Red Bulls

Sebastian Vettel leads a charge of the Red Bulls

Four-times world champion elect Sebastian Vettel kicked off his weekend in the best possible way by topping Friday practice for the Indian Grand Prix.

The Red Bull Racing driver, who is set to secure his fourth title if he finishes fifth or better in Sunday’s race, blitzed the Buddh International circuit setting a time more than three tenths quicker than his nearest rival.

Team mate Mark Webber was his closest challenger and showed encouraging pace on both medium and soft tyre compounds.

Lotus racer Romain Grosjean continued his impressive run of form and was third fastest.

Lewis Hamilton was the quickest Mercedes in fourth just three hundredths faster than Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.

Vettel set the precedent early in the session but it was once he switched to the soft compound rubber that saw him produce his and the day’s best time of 1:25.722s.

Both Vettel and Webber headed the timesheets and they successfully ran through stints on both the soft and medium compounds.

Grosjean once again proved to be the best of the rest and his best time was just half a second adrift of Vettel. While Hamilton posted a late effort to secure the fourth fastest time.

His team mate Nico Rosberg was sixth ahead of Ferrari’s Felipe Massa.

Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen, and the McLaren duo of Sergio Perez and Jenson Button rounded out the top 10.

Toro Rosso’s Daniel Ricciardo was 11th quickest.

Free Practice wasn’t without incident as Williams’ Pastor Maldonado’s session ended prematurely.

A wheel nut failure saw him coast to a halt at the entry of the pit lane and he was unable to rejoin session.

The wheel nut failure comes just two weeks after the team were fined by the FIA for a wheel failure at the Japanese Grand Prix.

See below for full Practice 1 results

 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:26.683s
 2 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:26.871 +0.188
 3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:26.899 +0.216
 4 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:26.990 +0.307
 5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:27.227 +0.544
 6 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:27.335 +0.652
 7 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1:27.416 +0.733
 8 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:27.692 +1.009
 9 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1:27.770 +1.087
10 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1:27.800 +1.117
11 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:28.035 +1.352
12 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:28.214 +1.531
13 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:28.336 +1.653
14 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1:28.342 +1.659
15 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:28.468 +1.785
16 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1:28.538 +1.855
17 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1:28.730 +2.047
18 James Calado Force India-Mercedes 1:29.197 +2.514
19 Giedgo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1:29.413 +2.730
20 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1:29.560 +2.877
21 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1:30.026 +3.343
22 Max Chilton  Marussia-Cosworth 1:30.471 +3.788

See below for full Practice 2 results 

 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault  1:25.722s
 2 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault  1:26.011s +0.289s
 3 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault  1:26.220s +0.498
 4 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes  1:26.399s +0.677
 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari  1:26.430s +0.708
 6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes  1:26.582s +0.860
 7 Felipe Massa Ferrari  1:26.601s +0.879
 8 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault  1:26.632s +0.910
 9 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes  1:26.857s +1.135
10 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes  1:26.972s +1.250
11 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari  1:27.304s +1.582
12 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes  1:27.375s +1.653
13 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault  1:27.429s +1.707
14 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari  1:27.491s +1.769
15 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes  1:27.608s +1.886
16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault  1:27.720s +1.998
17 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari  1:27.949s +2.227
18 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari  1:28.431s +2.709
19 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault  1:28.692s +2.970
20 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth  1:28.799s +3.077
21 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault  1:29.366s +3.644
22 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth  1:30.164s +4.442


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