Webber tops first Spanish GP practice
|By Pablo Elizalde||Friday, May 20th 2011, 09:31 GMT|
Red Bull Racing kicked off the Spanish Grand Prix weekend in perfect fashion, with Mark Webber topping the opening practice session ahead of team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
In a session taking place under very clear skies, Australian Webber set a time of 1m25.142s early on and stayed unchallenged for the remainder of the 90 minutes.
Webber was over a second quicker than Vettel, the championship leader having a low-key start to the weekend in the second Red Bull.
Mercedes GP's Nico Rosberg was third quickest, with local hero Fernando Alonso in fourth in the quickest of the Ferraris. Team-mate Felipe Massa finished down in 16th position.
Rookie Sergio Perez enjoyed a strong start to the weekend with the fifth fastest time in the Sauber, ahead of Lewis Hamilton in the McLaren and Michael Schumacher in the second Mercedes.
Massa was the first driver to complete a timed lap early in the session, but was soon outpaced by Rosberg and Schumacher, although neither posted a significant time as teams carried out installation laps to check their newer upgrades.
Perez jumped to the top of the times some 20 minutes into the session, the Sauber driver's 1m27.512s staying as the benchmark for some time until Webber bettered that by around half a second with less than an hour to go.
On his following lap, however, the Australian went nearly two second quicker, becoming the first man to lap in the 1m25s, improving even more minutes later after going through the pits.
Pastor Maldonado was the protagonist of the first and only incident of the day when he went off the track at Turn 12, the Williams driver avoiding contact but having to get out of the car so his car could be recovered from the gravel.
The Venezuelan, however, was unable to return to action in the morning.
Pos Driver Team Time Laps 1. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m25.142s 27 2. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m26.149s + 1.007 20 3. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m26.379s + 1.237 29 4. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m26.480s + 1.338 27 5. Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1m26.738s + 1.596 26 6. Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1m26.988s + 1.846 19 7. Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1m27.016s + 1.874 32 8. Nick Heidfeld Renault 1m27.132s + 1.990 21 9. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m27.138s + 1.996 22 10. Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1m27.212s + 2.070 20 11. Vitaly Petrov Renault 1m27.241s + 2.099 22 12. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m27.471s + 2.329 23 13. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1m28.005s + 2.863 11 14. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m28.027s + 2.885 26 15. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m28.163s + 3.021 22 16. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m28.654s + 3.512 28 17. Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1m28.819s + 3.677 23 18. Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m28.995s + 3.853 9 19. Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1m29.231s + 4.089 21 20. Jerome D'Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1m30.896s + 5.754 18 21. Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1m31.235s + 6.093 24 22. Tonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1m31.268s + 6.126 23 23. Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault 1m31.418s + 6.276 12 24. Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1m32.106s + 6.964 25 All Timing Unofficial