Rosberg tops second practice in Malaysia

By on Friday, March 28, 2014
Mercedes AMG Petronas

Mercedes AMG Petronas

Nico Rosberg set the fastest time for Mercedes during the second free practice session ahead of this weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix.

Rosberg’s time of 1:39.909 was marginally quicker than Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen, with world champion Sebastian Vettel less than a tenth of a second down in third place.

Vettel’s best time was set on his second lap on option tyres, compared to his rivals who managed their quickest lap on the first flying lap on the softer compound tyre.

Lewis Hamilton was fourth for Mercedes, ahead of Fernando Alonso and Williams’s Felipe Massa, who rounded out a top six separated by 0.203s.

Daniel Ricciardo finished in seventh and had a trip through the gravel late on, while Jenson Button was eight quickest in the McLaren.

Valtteri Bottas and Nico Hülkenberg rounded out the top 10 at a sweltering Sepang although both made mistakes. Bottas aborted his flying lap on options after his Williams snapped sideways on the entry to turn 11, while Hülkenberg locked up at the final hairpin and ran through the gravel.

The majority of drivers set their fastest times during qualifying simulations midway through the session, before focusing on long run pace across the second half of the 90 minute session.

Jean-Éric Vergne spun at the final corner but recovered to set the 11th fastest time, ahead of McLaren’s Kevin Magnussen. The Danish driver encountered a few gremlins with his MP4-29 and also complained of oversteer.

Adrian Sutil was 13th fastest for Sauber, ahead of Toro Rosso rookie Daniil Kvyat and the Mexican duo of Esteban Gutiérrez and Sergio Pérez, who rounded out the midfield runners.

Romain Grosjean completed almost 20 minutes of running for Lotus before he toured slowly back to the pits with an apparent gear selection problem. He later returned to the circuit and improved on his time before the gearbox problems returned in his E22 and he stopped out on track with 18 minutes of the session remaining.

Max Chilton suffered reduced running as he lost control of his Marussia exiting turn two and spun onto the inside kerb of turn three. He was later able to return to the circuit and he set the 18th fastest time, narrowly ahead of team-mate Jules Bianchi. Both drivers appeared to be suffering with the handling of the MR-03 as Bianchi ran wide at turn eight.

Marcus Ericsson was 20th for Caterham while Pastor Maldonado and Kamui Kobayashi were unable to venture out on track due to reliability problems in their respective cars.

16Nico RosbergMercedes1:39.90930
27Kimi RäikkönenFerrari1:39.9440.03530
31Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1:39.9700.06130
444Lewis HamiltonMercedes1:40.0510.14232
514Fernando AlonsoFerrari1:40.1030.19429
619Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1:40.1120.20334
73Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1:40.2760.36729
822Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1:40.6280.71928
977Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1:40.6380.72935
1027Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1:40.6910.78234
1125Jean-Eric VergneSTR-Renault1:40.7770.86833
1220Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes1:41.0141.10520
1399Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari1:41.2571.34828
1426Daniil KvyatSTR-Renault1:41.3251.41632
1521Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari1:41.4071.49834
1611Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1:41.6711.76225
178Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1:42.5312.62214
184Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari1:43.6383.72920
1917Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari1:43.7523.84329
209Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault1:45.7035.79431
2110Kamui KobayashiCaterham-RenaultNo time set0
2213Pastor MaldonadoLotus-RenaultNo time set0

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