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Singapore GP 2012

SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Practice 3 Report - Vettel quickest again

Sebastian Vettel, Singapore GP 2012
©  Active Pictures

Sebastian Vettel looks well positioned to take a 34th career pole position when qualifying for the Singapore GP gets underway at 9pm Singapore time.

The double champion lapped in 1:47.947 on Pirelli's supersoft option tyre, his Red Bull RB8 demoinstrating strong traction around the tricky Marina Bay track.

Closest challenger was former winner Lewis Hamilton (1:48.272), with Fernando Alonso's Ferrari (1:48.623) third quickest.

Nico Hulkenberg (1:48.859) continued his recent rich vein of form to take fourth best time in the first of the Force Indias, with team mate Paul Di Resta seventh (1:49.684) after initially complainng of a lack of grip on the prime tyre.

After a difficult opening day Kimi Raikkonen displayed improved pace in the first Lotus (1:48.865) just a hundredth down, with Felipe Massa (1:49.458) sixth with the second Ferrari.

Nico Rosberg's Mercedes (1:49.699), Bruno Senna's Williams (1:49.715) and Michael Schumacher's Mercedes (1:49.981) completed the top 10.

Just outside it was Mark Webber, who was competitive on the prime tyre before he joined Sauber's Sergio Perez in losing the rear end at Turn 18 and clouting the wall. Webber suffered a puncture and returned to the pits for some ultrasound checks to the rear suspension before coming back out for his run on supersofts. He was thwarted by a red flag when Vitaly Petrov shunted his Caterham with a minute of the session remaining.

Pole position looks like being a shoot-out between Vettel and Hamilton but from what we've seen so far, the reigning champion will take some stopping.