Sport

Vettel tops Hungary practice before qualifying

Red Bull reminded its Formula One rivals that it remains the team to beat after world champion Sebastian Vettel was quickest in the final practice before qualifying Saturday.

Vettel’s crew worked on his car through the night, and the payoff was immediate as the championship leader stormed to a fastest time of 1 minute, 21.168 seconds at the close of the 60—minute session as temperatures rose at the Hungaroring circuit. Teams are allowed to work beyond a 2 a.m. curfew limit four times during the season.

Ferrari and McLaren remained right on the Austrian team’s heel as Fernando Alonso of Ferrari finished three—tenths of a second behind the German. McLaren’s Jenson Button was nearly half a second behind to edge Mark Webber of Red Bull for third as they prepared for qualifying later on for Sunday’s 70—lap race.

Felipe Massa of Ferrari was fifth ahead of Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg, while Lewis Hamilton was 1.499 seconds behind Vettel after the McLaren driver led Friday’s pair of practice sessions in mixed weather conditions. Hamilton complained of brake trouble during the session.

Red Bull has started all 10 races this season from pole.

Vettel has won six of them, giving the German a commanding 77—point lead over Webber. Hamilton, coming off an impressive German GP win, trails by 82 points in third, four better than Alonso. Button trails by 107 points.

Michael Schumacher of Mercedes was the only other driver within two seconds of Vettel, while Vitaly Petrov of Renault and Force India’s Paul di Resta completed the top 10.

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Printable version | Mar 25, 2020 4:07:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/vettel-tops-hungary-practice-before-qualifying/article2308454.ece

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