Vettel on top of Friday Practice at BIC
Red Bull driver breaks his own lap record twice to stay fastest in the 2013 Indian Grand Prix Practice sessions
Yet again, Vettel goes fastest in both free practice sessions on the Buddh International Circuit. After being quickest in FP1 with a lap time of 1m26.683s, the German broke his own lap record on the BIC. The Red Bull driver went even quicker on the soft compound tyres in FP2 with the lap record down to 1m25.722s. The Red Bull cars were the fastest in both sessions, with Mark Webber just 0.188s and 0.289 behind the 24-year-old German on both occasions. Nico Rosberg in his Mercedes and the Romain Grosjean from Lotus were the only ones who looked to threaten that order; lapping their respective quickest and finishing third fastest in both practice sessions - 0.216 and 0.498 of a second behind Vettel respectively.
The switch from the medium to the softer compound tyres in FP2 meant a drop in lap times for all teams, and a reshuffling in the order of the quickest in FP1. Mercedes's Lewis Hamilton ended the sessions as the fourth quickest by lapping 1m26.399, 0.179s behind Grosjean. Fernando Alonso suffered gearbox issues in FP1 and managed to get just 6 laps out on track. However, the Spaniard stayed out for the 39 laps in FP2, and finished 5th fastest of the day at 1m26.430s. While Rosberg (1m26.582) stood between him and the seventh-fastest, his teammate Felipe Massa (1m26.610s). Kimi Raikkonen, who had a lacklustre FP1, looked much quicker on the softer compound and finished FP2 as the 8th fastest.
The heavily updated McLarens of Sergio Perez and Jenson Button rounded the top ten fastest list posting lap times of 1m26.857 and 1m26.972s. Pastor Maldonado Williams parting ways with his front-right wheelnut was one of the major incidents on the BIC Grand Prix today in FP2. Even after he lost the wheelnut the wheel didn't come off, and he managed to limp back to the pits before having to pull over. Apart from that, the practice sessions were fairly consistent.
Will Sebastian Vettel get his third consecutive victory in India? That picture will be clearer after the qualifying tomorrow.