Singapore GP: Fernando Alonso and Ferrari back on top in practice

Fernando Alonso was quickest again for Ferrari in third practice for the 2014 Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix, edging Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo by 0.051 seconds

Singapore GP: Fernando Alonso and Ferrari back on top in practice

Nico Rosberg was third fastest for Mercedes, 0.189s off Alonso's time, with team-mate Lewis Hamilton sixth and 0.439s off the leader.

Most teams ran a typical Saturday programme of long runs on the harder of the two available tyre choices, followed by qualifying simulations on the softer one.

There was a flurry of rain at 1pm local time and it remained cloudy throughout the afternoon, with the ambient temperature steady at around 28C - 10C lower than Friday's twilight session. Thus it was no surprise to hear drivers complaining of a lack of grip early on.

Ferrari appeared to be the fastest of Mercedes' rivals based on AUTOSPORT's analysis of raw pace on Friday, but it was Red Bull's Ricciardo - whose average long-run pace on super-soft rubber was so impressive on day one - who was quickest early on with a five-lap run on softs.

Rosberg soon beat that benchmark by a full second, though, closely followed by Hamilton, who had a half-spin into Turn 5 that he attributed to an engine glitch.

Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel, who required an engine change during Friday, then split the Mercedes on their second runs.

Alonso waited until half the session had elapsed before setting out for a long run on softs - and, while his fastest laps were good enough to put him fifth at that point, he was a second off Rosberg's long-run pace.

Rosberg was among the first to bolt on super-softs and run a qualifying simulation, setting a 1m47.488s lap that looked impressive until both Alonso and Ricciardo edged him out by over a tenth of a second. Rosberg exited his car and was observed in animated conversation with engineer Andrew Shovlin.

Jean-Eric Vergne was again impressive on super-soft rubber in the final moments, logging a 1m47.693s lap in his Toro Rosso that was good for fourth place ahead of Vettel, who switched to super-softs very late in the session.

Williams - as usual - waited until Saturday to show its hand. On their long runs on soft tyres Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa were sixth and seventh, splitting the Ferraris.

Massa reversed their order on super-soft rubber, three tenths faster than Bottas, and with Vergne's arrival ahead they ended the session seventh and eighth, still faster than Kimi Raikkonen.

McLaren barely troubled the top 10 throughout, on both tyre choices, and both its drivers were outpointed on their qualifying simulations by Esteban Gutierrez and Nico Hulkenberg.

Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m47.299s - 12
2 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m47.350s 0.051s 15
3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m47.488s 0.189s 15
4 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso/Renault 1m47.693s 0.394s 17
5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull/Renault 1m47.711s 0.412s 17
6 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m47.738s 0.439s 12
7 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m47.909s 0.610s 15
8 Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m48.205s 0.906s 15
9 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m48.226s 0.927s 16
10 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber/Ferrari 1m48.422s 1.123s 20
11 Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m48.450s 1.151s 11
12 Kevin Magnussen McLaren/Mercedes 1m48.577s 1.278s 9
13 Jenson Button McLaren/Mercedes 1m48.599s 1.300s 16
14 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso/Renault 1m48.637s 1.338s 18
15 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m49.078s 1.779s 15
16 Adrian Sutil Sauber/Ferrari 1m49.115s 1.816s 19
17 Romain Grosjean Lotus/Renault 1m49.485s 2.186s 17
18 Pastor Maldonado Lotus/Renault 1m50.149s 2.850s 15
19 Jules Bianchi Marussia/Ferrari 1m50.376s 3.077s 17
20 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham/Renault 1m50.939s 3.640s 17
21 Max Chilton Marussia/Ferrari 1m51.221s 3.922s 16
22 Marcus Ericsson Caterham/Renault 1m51.598s 4.299s 17


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