Formula 1 News

Webber sets pace in opening practice

Surprisingly Sebastian Vettel registered only the 16th best time; Petrov and Alonso, 2nd and 3rd respectivaly.
Friday, June 24, 2011

VALENCIA, Spain, June 24, 2011 (AFP) - Australian Mark Webber set the pace in the opening practice session for Sunday's European Grand Prix, the Red Bull
driver outpacing his nearest rival by nearly a second on the hybrid street circuit in Valencia.

Webber, keen to re-establish himself as a title contender, stamped his authority on proceedings with a best time of one minute and 40.597 seconds to
leave himself clear of Russian Vitaly Petrov, the ever-improving Renault driver.

Local hero Fernando Alonso was third for Ferrari ahead of Briton Lewis Hamilton of McLaren. German Nick Heidfeld completed the top five in the second
Renault.

Defending world champion and runaway leader Sebastian Vettel of Germany made a low-key start to his weekend, down in 16th place, more than 2.5 seconds
slower than teammate Webber in a session completed without major incident.

Force India's reserve driver German Nico Hulkenberg set the pace early on as few drivers completed a time lap on the track. But his enterprising start soon ended in pain when he hit the wall on Turn 12 where he lost control of the rear end of his car under braking. He had to limp in for repairs and sit out the rest of the morning, having completed only six laps.

Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado of Williams and Spaniard Jaime Alguersuari of Toro Rosso then posted fastest times before seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher took over top spot. He was succeeded by Brazilian Felipe Massa in his Ferrari and then Alonso before Webber took control for the final half an hour.

Here are the results:

EUROPEAN GRAND PRIX PRACTICE 1 TIMES (FP1)
POS No. DRIVER TEAM TIME GAP LAPS
1 2 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 1:40.403 22
2 10 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1:41.227 0.824 20
3 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:41.239 0.836 22
4 3 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:41.510 1.107 23
5 9 Nick Heidfeld Renault 1:41.580 1.177 24
6 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:41.758 1.355 23
7 4 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:41.926 1.523 14
8 14 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:41.955 1.552 20
9 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:42.043 1.640 22
10 19 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 1:42.216 1.813 29
11 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:42.270 1.867 26
12 18 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 1:42.412 2.009 27
13 11 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:42.704 2.301 23
14 17 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1:42.738 2.335 20
15 12 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1:42.841 2.438 28
16 1 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 1:42.941 2.538 21
17 16 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:43.201 2.798 18
18 15 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:43.769 3.366 7
19 20 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1:44.136 3.733 17
20 25 Jerome d'Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1:45.026 4.623 17
21 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:45.221 4.818 19
22 23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1:45.494 5.091 24
23 22 Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1:46.926 6.523 27
24 21 Karun Chandhok Lotus-Renault No time 2

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