POINTS TO PROVE: Red Bull's Mark Webber proved his worth during Saturday's final free practice session ahead of the 2013 Canadian GP when he drove the fastest lap. Image: AFP
MONTREAL, Canada - Red Bulls Mark Webber proved fastest during Saturday's final practice session before official qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix. The session was shortened to 30 minutes because of a crash in one of the support races.Webber took advantage of late drying conditions to clock the fastest time for Red Bull in Saturday's delayed and truncated final free practice session.
LAST MAN OUT
The 36-year-old Australian was the last man out at the right time and lapped in 1min17.895 seconds to outpace Adrian Sutil of Force India by three-tenths of a second.
Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes was third fastest ahead of Fernando Alonso of Ferrari, Red Bull’s defending triple World champion Sebastian Vettel and sixth-placed Nico Rosberg in the second Mercedes.
Paul Di Resta in the second Force India was seventh, Felipe Massa of Ferrari eighth and Jenson Button of McLaren ninth with Kimi Raikkonen 10th for Lotus.
The final times were almost meaningless, however, because they were all produced in the closing four minutes of a session reduced to 30 minutes because of an earlier delay to repair barriers at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
In the drying, rapidly-improving conditions, it was clear that the times were tumbling after a spate of minor off-track excursions earlier when the circuit was more slippery. There were, however, no serious accidents.
On a cold morning following more rain, an accident involving a support race car that had damaged the steel barriers around the circuit caused the 30-minutes delay for the final free practice session and reduced its duration from an hour to just half an hour.
The track temperature was only 14 degrees Celsius and this meant, also, that it was difficult for all of the teams and drivers to generate the necessary heat in their tyres for a decent level of speed and grip.
When the temperature crept up and the track surface dried out, the teams risked running on soft tyres in the final minutes and in the circumstances it was effectively a lottery as to who would be running last when the chequered flag came out.
The session eventually got underway with light rain falling on the Montreal street circuit.
Spain's Fernando Alonso had set the fastest lap time in Friday's first day of practice for Sunday's Canadian GP, the seventh round of the 2013 championship.
Third and Final Free practice session from the F1 Canadian GP
1. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull - Renault 1:17.895
2. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India - Mercedes 1:18.248
3. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 1:18.732
4. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1:18.977
5. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull - Renault 1:19.131
6. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1:19.457
7. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India - Mercedes 1:19.496
8. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1:19.750
9. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1:19.790
10. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Lotus - Renault 1:20.316
11. Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus - Renault 1:20.596
12. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams - Renault 1:21.035
13. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso - Ferrari 1:21.364
14. Max Chilton (Britain) Marussia - Cosworth 1:21.652
15. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Sauber - Ferrari 1:22.021
16. Esteban Gutierrez (Mexico) Sauber - Ferrari 1:22.720
17. Jean-Eric Vergne (France) Toro Rosso - Ferrari 1:23.058
18. Giedo van der Garde (Netherlands) Caterham - Renault 1:23.132
19. Sergio Perez (Mexico) McLaren 1:23.309
20. Charles Pic (France) Caterham - Renault 1:23.620
21. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams - Renault 1:24.314
22. Jules Bianchi (France) Marussia - Cosworth 1:26.195
Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 Canadian GP weekend.