2013 Malaysian GP: Practice 3

2013-03-23 08:36

SEPANG, Malaysia - Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel led the way in final practice for the 2013 Malaysian Grand Prix but Mercedes and Force India set fast enough times to suggest the battle for pole could be waged by as many as five teams.

Under bright skies with the threat of rain looming for qualifying later on March 23, Formula 1 world champion Vettel topped the charts with a flying lap of 1min36:435, the fastest of the weekend.

Vettel's late marker usurped 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton by 0.133 seconds with Force India's Adrian Sutil only marginally behind in third.


Red Bull's Mark Webber was next, ahead of season-opening race winner Kimi Raikkonen's Lotus with the second Force India of Paul Di Resta sixth quickest, just 0.372 seconds behind Vettel.

Seventh-placed Jenson Button enjoyed his best practice session of the nascent season. Button was able to nurse his McLaren around the demanding Sepang Circuit in 1min36.822, more than a second quicker than he had managed on a difficult Friday.

With the Ferraris of Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso, winner in Malaysia a year ago, both easing into the top 10 by the end of the 60-minute session, the battle for pole position in the late afternoon looks set to be a keenly contested affair.

2013 Malaysian Grand Prix: Third practice
1 Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Red Bull 1min36.435
2 Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 1min36.568
3 Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1min36.588
4 Mark Webber (Australia) Red Bull 1min36.613
5 Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Lotus 1min36.806
6 Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India 1min36.807
7 Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1min36.822
8 Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1min36.946
9 Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1min36.949
10 Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1min37.302
11 Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 1min37.359
12 Sergio Perez (Mexico) McLaren 1min37.538
13 Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Sauber 1min37.685
14 Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus  1min37.690
15 Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams 1min37.936
16 Esteban Gutierrez (Mexico) Sauber 1min38.294
17 Jean-Eric Vergne (France) Toro Rosso 1min38.376
18 Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso 1min38.425
19 Charles Pic (France) Caterham  1min38.995
20 Jules Bianchi (France) Marussia 1min39.717
21 Giedo van der Garde (Netherlands) Caterham 1min40.209
22 Max Chilton (Britain) Marussia 1min40.495

Second practice
First practice

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