Romain Grosjean and Kamui Kobayashi both set laps of 1’21.603 – identical to within one-thousandth of a second.
Grosjean was first to set the time, crossing the line early on the session. Kobayashi matched his effort when he took to the track on soft tyres in the final ten minutes of running.
Earlier on Kobayashi had caused a red flag when he stopped on track in his Sauber. Paul di Resta had more serious problems in his Force India. An hydraulic glitch confined him to the pits for most of the say, only emerging to set a time in the final hour of running.
They weren’t the only team to hit trouble. McLaren test driver Gary Paffet did 59 laps before stopping with a gearbox problem.
A power steering glitch held up Marussia as they split their running between Charles Pic and Timo Glock.
Red Bull also juggled two drivers, Mark Webber running in the morning at Sebastian Vettel in the afternoon. The pair were third and fourth fastest.
Sister team Toro Rosso switched between Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo halfway through the day.
Michael Schumacher had a busy day for Mercedes, logging 144 laps.
The session began on a damp track and drivers completed their first laps on intermediate tyres. But they quickly switched to slicks as the surface dried out.
|1||Romain Grosjean||Lotus-Renault E20||1’21.603||97|
|2||Kamui Kobayashi||Sauber-Ferrari C31||1’21.603||87||0.000|
|3||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull-Renault RB8||1’21.825||64||0.222|
|4||Mark Webber||Red Bull-Renault RB8||1’21.997||54||0.394|
|5||Felipe Massa||Ferrari F2012||1’22.257||106||0.654|
|6||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso-Ferrari STR7||1’22.422||65||0.819|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Toro Rosso-Ferrari STR7||1’22.588||22||0.985|
|8||Michael Schumacher||Mercedes W03||1’23.404||144||1.801|
|9||Charles Pic||Marussia-Cosworth MR01||1’23.982||46||2.379|
|10||Vitaly Petrov||Caterham-Renault CT01||1’24.312||112||2.709|
|11||Gary Paffett||McLaren-Mercedes MP4-27||1’24.480||59||2.877|
|12||Timo Glock||Marussia-Cosworth MR01||1’24.499||37||2.896|
|13||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes VJM05||1’24.749||14||3.146|
|14||Bruno Senna||Williams-Renault FW34||1’24.842||100||3.239|
2012 F1 season
- Hulkenberg’s missed win should have been “high point” for Force India
- Kubica reveals he almost withdrew from fateful 2011 rally – and had 2012 Ferrari F1 deal
- 2012 F1 season Blu-Ray “Victorious Vettel” reviewed
- 2012 F1 season DVD “Victorious Vettel” reviewed
- New team radio reveals Vettel’s penalty protests
Browse all 2012 F1 season articles
Image ?Ú?« Lotus F1 Team/LAT