World Champion Sebastian Vettel reasserted his dominance over his rivals at the Buddh International Circuit this morning with fastest time in Free Practice One for Sunday’s Indian Grand Prix.
The German has comfortably been top dog at the track since it joined the F1 calendar in 2011, and headed team-mate Mark Webber, Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg and Lotus driver Romain Grosjean in the top quartet.
The circuit, in Uttar Pradesh, proved dusty and a challenge for the drivers, with lap times imrpving considerably as the track surface cleaned up – mainly thanks to Sergio Perez who was the first to commit to a long run after half an hour of on-track emptiness. He and McLaren team-mate Jenson Button showed signs of improvement over recent poor form, as did Williams whose efforts with Valtteri Bottas and Pastor Maldonado placed them firmly in the midfield.
James Calado replaced Paul Di Resta at Force India after the Scot was unexpectedly taken ill yesterday, but Di Resta will return to the cockpit for FP2 this afternoon.
There were also problems for Fernando Alonso, who was sidelined after a problem with his Ferrari’s gearbox.
CLASSIFICATION – FP1 – INDIAN GRAND PRIX
|19||Van Der Garde||Caterham||1:29:413|