Mercedes Duo Lead The Way In Damp First Practice


Nico Rosberg was fastest in a damp first practice session ahead of this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix.

In a session that featured intermittent rain, Rosberg’s Mercedes team mate, Lewis Hamilton, was second fastest. They set their times early in the 90 minute session, with very few late improvements due to the conditions.

Sebastian Vettel did however move up the times late on to post the third fastest time. He and Red Bull team mate Mark Webber were the last two drivers to post a lap time. Both had concentrated on data gathering exercises earlier on, with Vettel having a couple of brief exploratory laps on the prototype 2014 dry tyre.

Mark Webber, in his final Grand Prix weekend, set the sixth fastest time. The two Red Bull drivers were split by Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso.  The second McLaren of Sergio Perez posted the seventh fastest time, while 2014 Toro Rosso driver Daniil Kvyat was classified in eighth after a lap early in the session.

Heikki Kovalainen, in his second race as Kimi Raikkonen’s stand in, and Nico Hulkenberg rounded out the top ten.

Felipe Massa, in his final race for Ferrari was eleventh. Runner up from one week ago in America, Romain Grosjean, posted the thirteenth fastest time, one place behind the second Sauber of Esteban Gutierrez.

Britain’s James Calado took the place of Paul di Resta at Force India and was eighteenth fastest. Meanwhile, at Marussia, Rodolfo Gonzales replaced Max Chilton, to post the slowest time of the session. He was 2.6 seconds off the pace of Jules Bianchi.