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Singapore GP 2013

SEPTEMBER 20, 2013

Practice 2 Report - Singapore Flyer

Sebastian Vettel, Singapore GP 2013
© The Cahier Archive

Sebastian Vettel flew in Singapore. The Red Bull driver was comfortably fastest in Free Practice 2 on Friday night. His teammate Mark Webber wound up second with a time .604 of a second slower.

The Mercedes duo of Nico Hulkenberg and Lewis Hamilton were third and fourth and a full second slower than Vettel.

Adrian Sutil was the first out in the night as FP2 began at 9:30 p.m. local time. His Force India teammate Paul di Resta was out next.

The ambient air temperature at the start of the 90-minute session was 29 degrees Fahrenheit (84 degrees Celsius), and the track temperature was also 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius).

Sutil also clocked the first flying lap at 1:51.501. Valtteri Bottas (Williams) quickly beat that with a 1:50.057. but Sutil responded with a 1:49.768.

7 minutes into the session, Sergio Perez posted the best time 1:49.652 in his McLaren. Nico Rosberg set a 1:48.281 in his Mercedes.

Then, 10 minutes into the session, Sebastian Vettel blasted around in his Red Bull to clock a 1:46853 and beat Rosberg's time by a full 1/428 seconds. Rosberg improved to a 1:47.633, and then his teammate Lewis Hamilton moved into second place with a 1:47.166.

Mark Webber had only done a couple of laps, but then 15 minutes into the session he did a flyer at 1:46.489 in his Red Bull.

The track was getting faster. 20 minutes into the session, Webber now topped the list with a 1:46.157, Vettel was second with a 1:46.408, and Hamilton third with a 1:46.577.

Felipe Massa, meanwhile, had a scary moment and just missed sliding his Ferrari into a wall.

The drivers were running Pirelli's medium compound slick tires with the white sidewalls.

25 minutes into the session, Daniel Ricciardo became the first driver to try the super soft slicks with the red sidewalls. He had been 15th quickest on the medium tires with a time of 1:49.644, and he jumped up to second with a lap of 1:46.406

More drivers, including Vettel, were now trying the super softs. 35 minutes into the session, he turned a 1:44.249. Then Webber turned a 1:44.853 on the super softs as Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) moved into third with a 1:45.691.

38 minutes into the session, Rosberg took over third place with a 1:45.258.

At the midpoint of FP2 the top six were: Vettel, Webber, Rosberg, Hamilton, Romain Grosjean (Lotus) and Fernando Alonso (Ferrari.) Only the two Red Bull drivers were below the 1:45 mark. The Mercedes drivers were a second slower. And the gap from the Red Bulls on top to the Marussias at the back was a whopping 5.4 seconds.

49 minutes into the session, Vettel headed out for another run on the super softs. Webber, Hamilton and Rosberg did the same. The game now was not a single fast lap but long runs to see how long the super softs would last in race conditions with heavy fuel loads.

With 30 minutes remaining, the top six remained? Vettel, Webber, Rosberg, Hamilton, Grosjean and Alonso. Jenson Button (McLaren), Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus), Sutil and Perez rounded out the top 10.

As the teams continued to work, Pastor Maldonado provided some entertainment by nosing his Williams into the wall at Turn 13. He selected reverse gear and backed out of trouble and drove back to the pits.

With 21 minutes remaining in the session, Maldonado was the only driver not out on the track.

With 18 minutes remaining in the session, Maldonado joined the action so all 22 drivers were out there until Grosjean pitted with brake problems.

With 15 minutes remaining in the session, Mercedes radioed Hamilton to pit for a change to the medium compound tire. Others including Vettel were also on the mediums as race simulations continued. Grosjean remained the only driver not running on track.

With7 minutes remaining in the session, Maldonado slid off again but this time found an escape road and missed the wall.

The top 10 at the end of FP2 were: Vettel, Webber, Rosberg, Hamilton, Grosjean, Alonso, Button, Raikkonen, Sutil and Perez.