GP Monaco, prove libere–23/05/2013
Monaco GP: Rosberg fastest again in second practice
Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton proved that Mercedes’ Formula 1 rivals are right to fear its Monaco pace as they went first and second in Thursday afternoon practice in Monte Carlo.
Following his consecutive poles in Bahrain and Spain, and fastest time in practice one in Monaco, Rosberg continued his strong run by topping the second session on a 1m14.759s.
He set that lap less than half an hour into the session and it remained unbeaten for the rest of the afternoon, as teams instead focused on just how far they could push both the soft and super-soft tyre compounds.
Although there were plenty of radio comments about tyre overheating and wear, as well as the usual Monaco traffic complaints, the Pirelli situation did not seem desperate for any teams.
The gap between the two Mercedes at the front was 0.318 seconds.
Ferrari was Mercedes’ main rival once again, with Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa third and fourth.
Mark Webber put Red Bull into the top five this time, but his team-mate Sebastian Vettel’s day remained quiet as he took ninth.
As is often the case on a practice day, Kimi Raikkonen and Lotus set ominously rapid long-run times that hinted at far more threatening race form that the headline pace suggested.
The Finn and his team-mate Romain Grosjean were sixth and seventh, despite the latter having the first crash of the F1 weekend when he slid into the Sainte Devote barriers on only his 11th lap.
Jenson Button was eighth for McLaren, followed by Vettel and the two Force Indias.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m14.759s 45 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m15.077s + 0.318s 50 3. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m15.196s + 0.437s 37 4. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m15.278s + 0.519s 38 5. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m15.404s + 0.645s 41 6. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1m15.511s + 0.752s 38 7. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m15.718s + 0.959s 10 8. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m15.959s + 1.200s 39 9. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m16.014s + 1.255s 32 10. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m16.046s + 1.287s 42 11. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m16.349s + 1.590s 43 12. Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1m16.434s + 1.675s 40 13. Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1m16.823s + 2.064s 42 14. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1m16.857s + 2.098s 40 15. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m16.935s + 2.176s 44 16. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m17.145s + 2.386s 37 17. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m17.184s + 2.425s 42 18. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1m17.264s + 2.505s 46 19. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1m17.892s + 3.133s 40 20. Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1m18.212s + 3.453s 43 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1m18.784s + 4.025s 40 22. Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1m19.031s + 4.272s 30
Monaco GP: Nico Rosberg tops first practice session
Nico Rosberg narrowly led a close first free practice session for the Monaco Grand Prix on Thursday morning.
The Mercedes driver, who is hunting for a third straight pole position after topping qualifying in Bahrain and Spain, set a 1m16.195s.
That was enough to edge out Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari by just 0.087 seconds.
The majority of the quick times came during a busy spell in the middle of the session. There was scant track action in the opening half-hour, but once the frontrunners came out, leading positions shuffled frequently for a brief period before the field settled into longer runs.
Felipe Massa had swapped the top spot with Rosberg a few times before the Mercedes and Alonso’s sister Ferrari pushed the Brazilian down to third.
He then dropped another spot to fourth when Romain Grosjean put his Lotus ahead with one of the few late improvements.
Grosjean had earlier lost a little track time after a minor brush with the barrier meant his car needed attention in the pits.
Lewis Hamilton completed the top five in the second Mercedes.
Monaco specialist Pastor Maldonado is banking on this weekend giving Williams some much needed encouragement. Sixth in practice one was a good start.
The Red Bulls of Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel were back in seventh and 10th, split by McLaren duo Jenson Button and Sergio Perez.
The only significant incident of the session came when Adrian Sutil spun and gave his Force India a knock at Sainte Devote in the closing minutes.
Hamilton had earlier skated down the escape road at the same point.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m16.195s 30 2. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m16.282s + 0.087s 26 3. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m16.380s + 0.185s 20 4. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m16.394s + 0.199s 22 5. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m16.469s + 0.274s 27 6. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1m16.993s + 0.798s 26 7. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m17.020s + 0.825s 26 8. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m17.129s + 0.934s 28 9. Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1m17.378s + 1.183s 24 10. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m17.380s + 1.185s 22 11. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1m17.509s + 1.314s 25 12. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m17.548s + 1.353s 26 13. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m17.625s + 1.430s 20 14. Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1m18.193s + 1.998s 25 15. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m18.454s + 2.259s 24 16. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m18.754s + 2.559s 27 17. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1m18.830s + 2.635s 27 18. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m19.067s + 2.872s 24 19. Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1m19.203s + 3.008s 20 20. Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1m19.438s + 3.243s 27 21. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1m19.773s + 3.578s 19 22. Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1m20.225s + 4.030s 20