Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2012: Red Bull’s Vettel tops Friday practice
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2012: Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel posts the fastest time in Friday practice for Sunday's race
Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel just edged out McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton in second practice for Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The championship leader was 0.168 seconds faster than Hamilton, who had topped the timesheets in the first practice session at the Yas Marina Circuit.
McLaren’s Jenson Button was third-quickest ahead of Red Bull’s Mark Webber, while Lotus drivers Romain Grosjean and Kimi Raikkonen were fifth and sixth.
“I think we can be happy with today,” said Vettel. “Overall we got a good lap on the soft tyres, but in general pace the McLaren’s were quick and seem competitive, so they’re the ones we need to look out for and beat. We need to improve the car overnight to qualify as high as we can tomorrow.
“Lewis was very quick on the medium tyre so we have to do a little bit of catching up to ensure we are close to them and possibly ahead tomorrow.”
Fernando Alonso was seventh-quickest across the two sessions after a disappointing Friday for Ferrari, with the Spaniard aiming to close the 13-point gap to Vettel in the drivers’ standings this weekend. Alonso’s team-mate Felipe Massa was eighth-fastest.
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2012: Combined Friday practice times
1. Sebastian Vettel Germany Red Bull-Renault 1m 41.751s
2. Lewis Hamilton Britain McLaren-Mercedes 1m 41.919s
3. Jenson Button Britain McLaren-Mercedes 1m 42.412s
4. Mark Webber Australia Red Bull-Renault 1m 42.466s
5. Romain Grosjean France Lotus-Renault 1m 42.500s
6. Kimi Raikkonen Finland Lotus-Renault 1m 42.532s
7. Fernando Alonso Spain Ferrari-Ferrari 1m 42.587s
8. Felipe Massa Brazil Ferrari-Ferrari 1m 42.823s
9. Pastor Maldonado Venezuela Williams-Renault 1m 42.998s
10. Sergio Perez Mexico Sauber-Ferrari 1m 43.106s
11. Bruno Senna Brazil Williams-Renault 1m 43.191s
12. Nico Rosberg Germany Mercedes-Mercedes 1m 43.200s
13. Nico Hulkenberg Germany Force India-Mercedes 1m 43.255s
14. Michael Schumacher Germany Mercedes-Mercedes 1m 43.267s
15. Paul di Resta Britain Force India-Mercedes 1m 43.578s
16. Kamui Kobayashi Japan Sauber-Ferrari 1m 43.689s
17. Daniel Ricciardo Australia Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m 44.260s
18. Jean-Eric Vergne France Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m 45.005s
19. Vitaly Petrov Russia Caterham-Renault 1m 45.245s
20. Valtteri Bottas Finland Williams-Renault 1m 45.347s*
21. Jules Bianchi France Force India-Mercedes 1m 45.769s*
22. Heikki Kovalainen Finland Caterham-Renault 1m 45.782s
23. Timo Glock Germany Marussia -Cosworth 1m 46.589s
24. Charles Pic France Marussia -Cosworth 1m 46.671s
25. Pedro de la Rosa Spain HRT-Cosworth 1m 46.707s
26. Narain Karthikeyan India HRT-Cosworth 1m 47.406s
27. Max Chilton Britain Marussia -Cosworth 1m 48.887s*
28. Ma Qing Hua China HRT-Cosworth 1m 50.487s*
29. Giedo van der Garde Holland Caterham-Renault no time*