Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Shanghai, 2011

Red Bull two seconds ahead in first practice

2011 Chinese Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Shanghai, 2011
Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Shanghai, 2011

Sebastian Vettel was two seconds faster than any non-Red Bull driver in the first practice session in China.

He lapped the Shanghai International Circuit in 1’38.739, 2.1 seconds faster than Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren in third place.

Jenson Button was fourth-fastest, delayed by a KERS problem on his McLaren.

Fifth-fastest driver Nick Heidfeld damaged his car in a crash one hour into the session.

Among the other incidents were spins by Paul di Resta and Pastor Maldonado.

Lotus’s Luiz Razia also damaged the front right of his car in an incident.

Timo Glock spent much of the session in the garage and HRT’s Vitantonio Liuzzi stopped on track with an apparent technical problem.

Pos. Car Driver Car Best lap Gap
1 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’38.739
2 2 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’39.354 0.615
3 3 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1’40.845 2.106
4 4 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’40.940 2.201
5 9 Nick Heidfeld Renault 1’40.987 2.248
6 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’41.046 2.307
7 17 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1’41.189 2.450
8 12 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1’41.222 2.483
9 10 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’41.231 2.492
10 18 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’41.328 2.589
11 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’41.361 2.622
12 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’41.434 2.695
13 14 Nico H???lkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1’41.494 2.755
14 20 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1’41.579 2.840
15 15 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’41.610 2.871
16 19 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’41.752 3.013
17 11 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1’41.939 3.200
18 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’42.301 3.562
19 16 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1’43.792 5.053
20 25 Jerome d’Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1’44.089 5.350
21 23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1’44.359 5.620
22 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1’44.438 5.699
23 21 Luiz Razia Lotus-Renault 1’44.542 5.803
24 22 Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1’45.019 6.280

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Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images

35 comments on “Red Bull two seconds ahead in first practice”

  1. if they are going to be so fast HRT will never qualify to the race

    1. HRT is within the 107% still..cut of is 1.45.6

      1. Clearly spent too long calculating that :p

      2. I meant me (below)

        1. It is painfully obvious that EVERYONE is sandbagging in these practice sessions now. Compare to practice lap times of last year’s. They’ve been doing this since the last race weekend now. I know that the cars are not that drastically slower than last year.

          I never thought that it might be to do HRT a favor, but now that the point has been brought to my attention I think I have to agree.

      3. If you teach yourself to look at it intuitively, you don’t have to calculate anything.

        The cut out time is usually 6-7 seconds behind a leader (for the top time between 1:26 and 1:40). With this simple rule I can see at a glance, if teams are within 107%.

    2. Unless I’m mistaken, they’re both within 107% by over half a second here.

    3. Even in this practice session they were easily within the 107% limit of 1:45.650

      Luizzi was only 5.7% of Vettel’s pace

    4. I don’t agree, the only time the 107% made impact was when HRT didn’t even put in a hot lap. Last weekend 107% was 1:43.516 and the slowest HRT hit 42.574… so unless they have another pre-qually ‘williams’ (failure) we’ll see them on the grid :)

      1. The only reason HRT are beating the 107% is that Red Bull don’t bother making an effort in Q1.

        1. But you’ve got to admit the change from Australia to Malaysia thanks to the new parts has been great.

  2. top 4 did their fastest laps on soft compound?

  3. Again the Hulk is faster than his team mate just shows you how much he deserves a drive there!!

    1. during the seasone someone will be replaced to him, I guess.

  4. Err….I don’t want to believe.

  5. This sucks! He’s gonna win every damn race this year.

    1. I’m getting pretty annoyed as well. This season is going to be crap if this is trend every weekend.

      1. Actually so far the season has been really exciting, the midfield battles are superb.

  6. Vettel is still sand-bagging !!!

  7. Realizing it is only FP1 times but looking at the team ultimate lap time % distance from Red Bull it is very surprissing to actually see that from Malaysia to China the only teams making gains are the 3 new teams at the back.

    HRT went from 11.0% to 7.0% to now 5.7%
    Virgin went from 7.6% to 5.8% to now 5.4%
    Lotus went from 6.5% to 3.7% to now 3.0%

    To compare:
    Mclaren went from 0.8% to equal to now 2.0%
    Ferrari went from 1.8% to 1.0% to now 2.2%

    Also Williams continuously improved from 3.1% to 2.8% to now 2.6%

    Ultimate team lap time is some of the 3 best times per sector driven by either of their drivers.

    1. I guess its a bit about these teams still being new and learning with each session. Especially for HRT every new lap brings a world of experience.

      Making it the perfect illustration of the nonsense of a 107% rule combined with a in season testing ban.

  8. :S I’m sure the chaps in Milton Keynes will be happy (let’s face it there’s very little else in Milton Keynes to keep them occupied) but this is not what us fans wanted to see: Yet another Red Bull domination weekend.

    1. Unless you like roundabouts

  9. Hm, so does this mean McLaren got Red Bull scared? The only times they were setting fast laps from the go was when Ferrari or McLaren (or Brawn in 2009) were really threatening the RB cars for pole position.

    That sounds good, if its true. Otherwise a 2 second advantage would be a complete and utterly boring walkover, if nature does not step in!

  10. Heikki was fast!

    1. He sure was. Not sure if he was on softs and the rest on hards…and the fuel loads. But if the midfield were pretty even in terms of strategy, the Lotus cars and Heikki in particular should be applauded!

  11. it amazes me how some people now suddenly believe Red Bull are 2 secs faster than anyone else!

    1. Maybe its not two seconds, but it could very easily be a second quicker than anyone else. And its very believable..

      1. when a gap is 2 seconds, it mite as well be 5. It means nothing when its that big

        1. It certainly won’t be 2s in qualifying. But everyone else’s times are pretty close to each other. What were RBR doing?

  12. Red Bull 1-2 ? 2 seconds is a huge gap, but we know Mclaren boys are testing new parts, so maybe tomorrow’s practice session give us a better idea about the gap.

  13. Crazy times from the RB7.

    Good stuff from Heidfeld too.

    1. Indeed, that Renault has got pace hasnt it. He’d be better placed not putting it in the barriers though ;-)

  14. Not really the good for RBR.
    Not one else tried to set a quick time, wouldn’t read anything into it.

    Mclaren are just testing a new front wing exhaust and floor.

  15. Who is betting against another Red Bull & Vettel washout in China?.

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