• German Grand Prix - FP2

Webber heads Alonso in second practice

Chris Medland
July 22, 2011
Mark Webber was 0.373s quicker than team-mate Sebastian Vettel © Getty Images
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Mark Webber set the fastest time of the second practice session for Sunday's German Grand Prix, heading Fernando Alonso at the Nurburgring.

Webber's time of 1:31.711 was nearly 0.168s quicker than Alonso's effort, as they were the only two drivers to go faster than Alonso's morning effort. Sebastian Vettel was third once again, 0.2s further back, while Felipe Massa was fourth on a 1:32.354 as Ferrari and Red Bull set the headline pace.

Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg showed some pace for Mercedes with the fifth and sixth fastest times respectively, ahead of Lewis Hamilton a full second off the pace. McLaren was more competitive on the long, heavy fuel runs though, with Hamilton setting lap times comparative to those ahead of him.

It was a more difficult afternoon for Hamilton's team-mate Jenson Button, however, as a technical problem with an experimental exhaust system curtailed his running with 20 minutes to go and left him down in 11th place.

Renault was another team to explore exhaust possibilities, with Nick Heidfeld testing a new rear-exiting system as opposed to Vitaly Petrov who was running the team's usual front-exiting solution. There was no big gain to be had for either driver though, as the pair finished the session just 0.040s apart.

There was a scare for morning pace-setter Alonso late in the session, as he tried to dive down the inside of Schumacher in to turn seven and lost the rear end of the car as Schumacher turned in. Alonso took to the grass and just avoided side-swiping the Mercedes in what was a close escape from some heavy damage.

There were a few other worrying moments down the field as Timo Glock went off at turn five, just managing to keep the car out of the wall but unable to prevent a spin on the wet grass as he tried to slow before rejoining the track. Heikki Kovalainen went off again at the same place in a carbon copy of his excursion during the morning session.

There were spins for Karun Chandhok and Adrian Sutil early on, while Daniel Ricciardo had his session ended after only ten minutes when the Cosworth engine in the back of his HRT gave up exiting turn four. Sebastian Buemi was only able to complete three laps as an engine misfire kept him in the garage, but the lack of dry running may not prove too costly if the forecast showers arrive for qualifying.

Chris Medland is an assistant editor on ESPNF1

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