New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

2013 US GP: Second practice

2013-11-15 23:20

FASTEST IN TEXAS: Sebastian Vettel sets the fastest time during the second practice session ahead of the 2013 US GP.

Sebastian Vettel's bid for a record eighth straight Formula 1 race win of the season picked up speed on November 15 with the Red Bull driver fastest in free practice for the 2013 US Grand Prix.

After sitting near the bottom of the timing sheets in a foggy and chaotic opening practice session, Vettel lapped the Circuit of the Americas in Texas with a best time of 1minute 37.305 seconds.

Vettel, who won his fourth successive title in India last month and now has 11 wins in 2013, was 0.115 seconds faster than team mate Mark Webber who cemented the Red Bull one-two.


No driver has ever won eight races in a row in a single season, but Vettel equalled Michael Schumacher's seven earlier in November in Abu Dhabi and is favourite to win again in Texas.

The two Red Bulls were followed by the two Mercedes drivers with Nico Rosberg third and Lewis Hamilton, winner of the inaugural race in Austin in 2012 with McLaren, ready for another strong weekend in fourth.

Heikki Kovalainen, who is replacing compatriot Kimi Raikkonen at Lotus for the last two races after the 2007 champion pulled out to have back surgery, was an impressive fifth fastest in the afternoon.

Kovalainen's team mate Romain Grosjean was eighth in the same session.

Lotus are fighting with Ferrari and second-placed Mercedes for the coveted, and lucrative, runner-up slot in the Constructors' Championship already won by Red Bull.


McLaren had another tough day with Jenson Button handed a three place grid penalty for the November 17 race after stewards ruled the he had overtaken a car while the first session was under a red flag.

Button was ninth quickest in the afternoon ahead of Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, who was given the all-clear to race after a medical on November 14.

Alonso, who hurt his back when he hit a kerb at high speed during the race in Abu Dhabi, had topped the delayed and truncated morning practice session but could not match that pace in the afternoon.

The day got off to a stuttering start when teams and drivers were kept waiting for 40 minutes as heavy fog shrouded the circuit.

The FIA, said the delay was necessary because medical helicopters would not be able to take off or land if needed.

When it eventually began, the session was soon red flagged again with officials waiting for an absent helicopter to land.

2013 US GP: Second practice
1 Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull  1min37.305
2 Mark Webber (Australia) Red Bull  1min37.420
3 Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1min37.785
4 Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 1min37.958
5 Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Caterham  1min38.073
6 Esteban Gutierrez (Mexico) Sauber  1min38.229
7 Nico Hulkenberg (Germany) Sauber  1min38.254
8 Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus  1min38.255
9 Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1min38.269
10 Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1min38.461
11 Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India  1min38.719
12 Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1min38.938
13 Sergio Perez (Mexico) McLaren 1min38.941
14 Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso  1min39.246
15 Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India  1min39.410
16 Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams  1min39.512
17 Jean-Eric Vergne (France) Toro Rosso  1min39.579
18 Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams  1min39.784
19 Charles Pic (France) Caterham  1min40.376
20 Giedo van der Garde (Netherlands) Caterham  1min40.563
21 Max Chilton (Britain) Marussia  1min46.226
22 Jules Bianchi (France) Marussia  1min47.009
First practice

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 US GP weekend

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