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2013-07-26 12:51

TOP FORM: Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel was fastest out on track at the Hungaroring during the first free practice session on Friday, ahead of the 2013 Hungarian GP on Sunday, July 28. Image: AP

JEROME PUGMIRE

BUDAPEST, Hungary - Formula 1 championship leader Sebastian Vettel has set the fastest time in first practice for the 2013 Hungarian GP.

The three-times champion left it quite late before doing a timed lap but was quickly into his stride on a hot, blue-sky day.

He's yet to win in Hungary but clocked 1min22.723 - at 4.381km, the third shortest in F1 after Monaco and Canada.

LAST 30 MINUTES

His Red Bull team mate Mark Webber was 0.259sec slower and Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen third at 0.287sec - ahead of Friday's afternoon second practice. Spaniard Fernando Alonso was 0.376sec behind Vettel in fourth.

Vettel waited until the last 30 minutes for his first timed lap and it didn't take him long to shoot up the leader board.

Raikkonen had an eventful session in his Lotus. "I've got water on my foot, or something, on the pedals," he said over his radio. He eased off toward the end with a puncture.

Nico Rosberg set the early pace but the priorities for Mercedes were clearly elsewhere. The team has excelled in qualifying - starting five of the previous six races from pole - but lacks speed over a race. Rosberg has two GP wins, each from pole, while team mate Lewis Hamilton has none.

They each completed 28 laps; Rosberg was eighth-fastest, Hamilton 13th.

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 Hungarian GP weekend.

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