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Indian GP: Sebastian Vettel on top in first practice session

Vettel tops first Indian GP practice

Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber held off the Mercedes and Lotus challenge to give Red Bull a one-two in opening practice for the Indian Grand Prix.

Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg ensured that Vettel did not have things all his own way during the mid-session short runs when most of the quick laps were set.

Rosberg did a 1m27.937s then a 1m27.217s in quick succession to remove the McLarens from their early position on top.

Vettel then beat his compatriot by 0.021 seconds, but within a minute Rosberg went quicker again and produced a 1m26.899s on the 10th lap of his run.

After a slower lap, Vettel got back up to speed again with a 1m26.683s that would keep him ahead for the rest of the morning.

Webber then snuck his Red Bull between the two Germans in the closing minutes.

Romain Grosjean was fourth for Lotus, while team-mate Kimi Raikkonen never attempted a lower-fuel run and was 1.7s slower in 17th.

Lewis Hamilton had also languished in the midfield for much of the session, before jumping to fifth late on, just ahead of Jenson Button and Sergio Perez's McLarens.

It was a tough start for Ferrari, with Felipe Massa eighth and Fernando Alonso sidelined by a gearbox problem after six laps.

Williams got itself into the top 10 with Valtteri Bottas just behind Nico Hulkenberg's Sauber in 10th. Bottas's team-mate Pastor Maldonado also had a spell in the top half of the field, though he also had a spin.

James Calado was the session's other spinner, as he stood in for the unwell Paul di Resta at Force India.


Pos Driver                  Team                     Time        Gap    Laps
 1. Sebastian Vettel        Red Bull-Renault         1m26.683s           24
 2. Mark Webber             Red Bull-Renault         1m26.871s  +0.188s  17
 3. Nico Rosberg            Mercedes                 1m26.899s  +0.216s  23
 4. Romain Grosjean         Lotus-Renault            1m26.990s  +0.307s  20
 5. Lewis Hamilton          Mercedes                 1m27.227s  +0.544s  21
 6. Jenson Button           McLaren-Mercedes         1m27.335s  +0.652s  23
 7. Sergio Perez            McLaren-Mercedes         1m27.416s  +0.733s  23
 8. Felipe Massa            Ferrari                  1m27.692s  +1.009s  21
 9. Nico Hulkenberg         Sauber-Ferrari           1m27.770s  +1.087s  19
10. Valtteri Bottas         Williams-Renault         1m27.800s  +1.117s  23
11. Jean-Eric Vergne        Toro Rosso-Ferrari       1m28.035s  +1.352s  25
12. Fernando Alonso         Ferrari                  1m28.214s  +1.531s   6
13. Daniel Ricciardo        Toro Rosso-Ferrari       1m28.336s  +1.653s  18
14. Pastor Maldonado        Williams-Renault         1m28.342s  +1.659s  21
15. Adrian Sutil            Force India-Mercedes     1m28.468s  +1.785s  20
16. Esteban Gutierrez       Sauber-Ferrari           1m28.538s  +1.855s  18
17. Kimi Raikkonen          Lotus-Renault            1m28.730s  +2.047s  18
18. James Calado            Force India-Mercedes     1m29.197s  +2.514s  22
19. Giedgo van der Garde    Caterham-Renault         1m29.413s  +2.730s  24
20. Jules Bianchi           Marussia-Cosworth        1m29.560s  +2.877s  20
21. Charles Pic             Caterham-Renault         1m30.026s  +3.343s  23
22. Max Chilton             Marussia-Cosworth        1m30.471s  +3.788s  17
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