Lewis Hamilton quickest again in final Abu Dhabi practice

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi 2011Lewis Hamilton kept McLaren on top in the final practice session in Abu Dhabi, the 2008 world champion more than four tenths faster than any of his rivals.
New double world champion Sebastian Vettel was second fastest ahead of his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber, with McLaren's Jenson Button in fourth.
Fernando Alonso has a quiet session on his way to fifth position for Ferrari, ahead of Mercedes' Nico Rosberg. Felipe Massa (Ferrari), Force India duo Adrian Sutil, Paul di Resta and Michael Schumacher (Mercedes) completed the top 10.

Sauber and Force India appeared to carry their battle for sixth place in the constructors' championship over to final practice in the first 15 minutes of the session as Sergio Perez and di Resta traded times at the top of the chart initially.
That continued only until Massa emerged from the pits to go fastest with a 1m43.132s lap in the Ferrari.
The Brazilian remained on top for about five minutes, then Button lowered the mark by a second with a lap of 1m42.162s, just around the same time as Hamilton and Schumacher appeared to squabble over an apex - forcing the Mercedes driver over the run-off.
Hamilton was quickly over that domestic however and challenging his team-mate at the top of the pile. But as Hamilton closed to within a tenth, so Button extended the gap again with a 1m40.993s.
Red Bull had a slow start to the session and it was not until halfway through that Vettel and Webber slotted in to third and fourth positions. The Australian was not finished however, and his next lap through brought him to within 0.002s of Button.
As if to prove how close things were, Vettel then worked down to a 1m40.938s which meant that the top three were covered by 0.06s at that point.
Hamilton was having none of that and produced a 1m40.631s with 20 minutes to go, as the balance of power swung back and forth between Red Bull and McLaren.
And then, as if from nowhere, Massa was back in the picture as he switched to the soft option tyres – setting an identical time to the thousandth as Hamilton. Just as Rosberg, also on the options, split Hamilton and Vettel to go third in the Mercedes.
Rosberg followed his quick run with a cool-down lap. But the one after that saw the German go quickest overall with a 1m40.135s lap – just 0.048s faster than Massa's own improvement following a similar strategy – perhaps a hint of what is to come in qualifying.
And so to the final five minutes and the now traditional period of qualifying simulation runs. And Webber was the first to show his hand with a 1m39.668s, followed by Vettel moments later, though the world champion was 0.063s slower than his team-mate.
Then Hamilton proved McLaren has indeed got some prodigious pace this weekend as he fired in an impressive 1m39.177s lap. Webber might have matched that but came across his own team-mate warming his tyres in the final sector.
Hamilton then improved further to lower the mark for a final time with a 1m38.976s, and neither Vettel - who improved to second – nor Webber could match that.

Pos  Driver              Team/Car              Time       Gap       Laps
1. Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1m38.976s 17
2. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m39.403s + 0.427s 18
3. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m39.427s + 0.451s 18
4. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m39.429s + 0.453s 16
5. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m39.661s + 0.685s 16
6. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m40.135s + 1.159s 19
7. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m40.183s + 1.207s 18
8. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m40.429s + 1.453s 21
9. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m40.511s + 1.535s 19
10. Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1m40.938s + 1.962s 18
11. Bruno Senna Renault 1m41.509s + 2.533s 21
12. Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1m41.527s + 2.551s 21
13. Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1m41.566s + 2.590s 20
14. Vitaly Petrov Renault 1m41.594s + 2.618s 18
15. Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m41.622s + 2.646s 18
16. Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m41.855s + 2.879s 18
17. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1m42.025s + 3.049s 19
18. Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1m43.409s + 4.433s 22
19. Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1m43.861s + 4.885s 5
20. Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1m45.262s + 6.286s 23
21. Tonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1m45.302s + 6.326s 20
22. Jerome D'Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1m45.509s + 6.533s 22
23. Daniel Ricciardo HRT-Cosworth 1m45.732s + 6.756s 20
24. Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault 1

All timing unofficial


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