Prac Three: Alonso tops the charts

Saturday 01-September-2012 11:04

As the sun shone down on the Spa circuit, Fernando Alonso came to the fore, setting the pace ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in Saturday's final practice.

Having lost both practice sessions on Friday due to the rain the drivers were quickly down to business in Saturday's final hour-long practice session with Jean-Eric Vergne getting the ball rolling with a 1:58.079.

Bruno Senna was the next to lead the way before losing to Mark Webber and Kimi Raikkonen only to come back with a 1:53.647. There, however, still a few puddles for the drivers to contend with which resulted in a twitch or two.

Nico Rosberg's session came to a halt after just 13 minutes as the Mercedes driver parked his car on the side of the track with a suspected transmission problem.

Back in the action Senna was leading the way with a 1:51.741 while Charles Pic and Timo Glock were second and third in their revised and flow-vis painted Marussias. They were 2.4s and 3.3s off the pace.

Fernando Alonso was the next to hit the front as he posted a 1:50.936 while his Championship rival Sebastian Vettel struggled to stay on the track as his missed his braking point, locked up and ran wide. Vettel was seventh.

It was a slow start for the McLarens with Jenson Button 20th and Lewis Hamilton 21st at the halfway mark while Alonso at the front had lowered the benchmark time to a 1:50.690.

Shortly after it was all change as Sergio Perez went quickest, the first driver into the 1:49s, while Kamui Kobayashi was second ahead of Pastor Maldonado. Romain Grosjean was the next to lead the way before he was overhauled by Webber with Sebastian Vettel taking second ahead of Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen.

There was a brief lull ahead of the final few minutes as the drivers heading into the pits for last minute alterations to their set-up. Then it was all go.

Perez hit the front before Alonso, back on the medium tyres, went quickest with a 1:48.542. Raikkonen went second quickest after setting a fastest middle sector time with Perez dropping to third. Button finished fifth behind Kobayashi and ahead of Massa and Webber.

01 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:48.542 18 laps
02 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus 1:48.683 0.141 21 laps
03 Sergio Perez Sauber 1:48.850 0.308 23 laps
04 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 1:48.863 0.321 20 laps
05 Jenson Button McLaren 1:49.091 0.549 18 laps
06 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:49.092 0.550 16 laps
07 Mark Webber Red Bull 1:49.164 0.622 21 laps
08 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:49.266 0.724 23 laps
09 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1:49.292 0.750 23 laps
10 Paul di Resta Force India 1:49.382 0.840 22 laps
11 Pastor Maldonado Williams 1:49.561 1.019 23 laps
12 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 1:49.615 1.073 19 laps
13 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:49.621 1.079 26 laps
14 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:49.674 1.132 23 laps
15 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1:49.710 1.168 21 laps
16 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1:49.776 1.234 22 laps
17 Bruno Senna Williams 1:50.027 1.485 20 laps
18 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham 1:52.339 3.797 21 laps
19 Charles Pic Marussia 1:52.566 4.024 20 laps
20 Timo Glock Marussia 1:52.630 4.088 18 laps
21 Vitaly Petrov Caterham 1:52.809 4.267 22 laps
22 Pedro de la Rosa HRT 1:53.383 4.841 22 laps
23 Narain Karthikeyan HRT 1:53.562 5.020 23 laps
24 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:58.113 9.571 5 laps

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