Sebastian Vettel sets pace in second practice in Austin

By on Friday, November 15, 2013
Red Bull/Getty Images

Red Bull/Getty Images

Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time during second practice for the United States Grand Prix in Austin.

Vettel's time of 1:37.305 was just over a tenth of a second faster than Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber as the reigning champions finished over three tenths of a second clear than their nearest rivals.

Mercedes finished the 90 minute session in third and fourth, with Nico Rosberg eclipsing Lewis Hamilton.

Heikki Kovalainen - replacing the injured Kimi Raikkonen at Lotus - was fifth, ahead of Esteban Gutierrez, Nico Hulkenberg and Romain Grosjean.

Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso rounded out the top 10.

Adrian Sutil was 11th fastest, with Felipe Massa and Sergio Perez close behind.

Daniel Ricciardo set the 14th fastest time, ahead of Paul di Resta, Valtteri Bottas, Jean-Eric Vergne and Pastor Maldonado, who was vocal in his criticism for the set-up of the Williams FW35, proclaiming that "everything is wrong."

Charles Pic was 19th quickest, with Giedo van der Garde, Max Chilton and Jules Bianchi rounding out the runners. The Marussia drivers were some six seconds off the pace of nearest rivals Caterham.

Drivers began the session on the harder compound tyres, keen to make up for time lost following a disrupted first practice session earlier in the day.

Vettel set the fastest time on the hard tyres but he was usurped firstly by Rosberg and then Webber when the latter duo switched to the medium compound tyres. Vettel firmly re-established his advantage by setting a time 0.115s faster than team-mate Webber on his run on the option tyres.

Kovalainen completed the most running, 41 laps, and was 0.182s faster than the best time managed by team-mate Grosjean.

Chilton was the only drive to encounter serious trouble as he suffered a brake failure in his Marussia towards the end of the session. The Brit was pitched into a spin when he tried to brake for the final corner and had to abandon his stricken car.

The recovery crane dispatched to retrieve Chilton's Marussia got into some difficulty - with Hulkenberg complaining about the time taken to move the car - but the Marussia was eventually cleared from danger.

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