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Australian GP 2010

MARCH 27, 2010

Practice 3 Report - Webber sets home pulses racing

Mark Webber, Australian GP 2010
© The Cahier Archive

Home hero Mark Webber gave the local fans a tantalising hope by setting the fastest time of Saturday morning's practice session in his Red Bull. At a cool, cloudy Albert Park, Webber went top with 15 minutes left as the big players completed their preparations for this afternoon's qualifying, twice further improving his time.

Fernando Alonso was second, two tenths behind, as the usual suspects returned to the top. After his relative disappointment in Bahrain, Michael Schumacher seems to be back on it this weekend. He briefly topped the timesheets for the first time since his return with 20 minutes left, ending up 3rd, ahead of fellow Germans Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg.

Jenson Button pipped McLaren team-mate Lewis Hamilton to 6th place. But given the headlines in the Australian press this morning in reaction to yesterday's traffic misdemeanour, Hamilton will just have been glad to get into the McLaren in which he is allowed to do burnouts and go as fast as he likes.

Both Force Indias made the top ten, Adrian Sutil and Vitantonio Liuzzi sandwiching Felipe Massa's Ferrari. After yesterday's heroics, Robert Kubica complained of a lack of grip, down in 13th n the Renault. Further back, it was another challenging session for Hispania, with Bruno Senna stopping out on the circuit halfway through and Karun Chandhok following suit late on.

These cool conditions are expected to continue for the afternoon's qualifying, though there should be no repeat of yesterday's rain. That's not to say qualifying will be straightforward. A number of incidents during practice have showed that traffic will be an issue with all 24 cars on the track.