Vettel leads final free practice at Germany

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Sebastian Vettel topped the times in the last practice session ahead of qualifying for this weekend's German Grand Prix. The home driver topped teammate Mark Webber with a small margin. Fernando Alonso was again the closest competitor to the Red Bull cars.

Halfway through the session, most teams were trying out the medium tyres in longer runs. It showed that McLaren in those conditions was a close match to both Ferrari and Red Bull. The driver topping the timesheet switched rapidly between those three teams after Mercedes GP put themselves ahead earlier on in the session.

With 15 minutes left on the clock, drivers started to switch to soft tyres. First the Force India drivers of which Sutil was fastest, then Mercedes GP where Rosberg took charge, and with 9 minutes left it was Alonso who improved again.

The gap between the medium and soft tyre appears to be nearly 2 seconds a lap, a dramatic difference that could have a great influence on tomorrow's strategy.

Alonso set his best time on fresh option tyres, something neither of the other top drivers managed to do. It's interesting to see that both McLaren and Alonso need an additional lap on the tyres before they are warmed up properly. On his second lap, Webber manages to beat Alonso only to see Vettel go a bit quicker yet again.

Results

Pos.No.DriverTeamTimeGapLaps
11Sebastian VettelRBR-Renault1:30.916
22Mark WebberRBR-Renault1:31.0490.133
35Fernando AlonsoFerrari1:31.1380.222
43Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1:31.5780.662
54Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1:31.6230.707
68Nico RosbergMercedes AMG1:31.6940.778
76Felipe MassaFerrari1:32.1441.228
814Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes1:32.3911.475
97Michael SchumacherMercedes AMG1:32.5231.607
1012Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1:32.7511.835
1110Vitaly PetrovRenault1:32.7771.861
1215Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1:32.8131.897
139Nick HeidfeldRenault1:33.0722.156
1411Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1:33.1792.263
1517Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1:33.5312.615
1616Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1:33.6712.755
1718Sebastien BuemiSTR-Ferrari1:33.9483.032
1819Jaime AlguersuariSTR-Ferrari1:34.1253.209
1920Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1:35.3854.469
2024Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1:36.7245.808
2123Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth1:36.8045.888
2225Jerome d'AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1:36.8945.978
2321Karun ChandhokLotus-Renault1:36.9596.043
2422Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1:37.5546.638