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Final practice - Webber fastest as wet weather continues in Brazil 23 Nov 2013

Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19, Brazilian Grand Prix, Practice, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Friday, 22 November 2013 A late flying lap from Romain Grosjean takes the Lotus driver up to second in the timesheets, just ahead of his team mate Heikki Kovalainen As conditions improve, Sebastian Vettel sets out for Red Bull but runs wide at Turn Four

Having topped both sessions on Friday, Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg joined the Ferrari pair of Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa and McLaren’s Jenson Button in not setting a time in a very wet final practice in Brazil on Saturday morning.

But whilst those four drivers opted to save tyres for qualifying (and others, including Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, severely limited their running), Red Bull’s Mark Webber was amongst those who did some serious running and it was the Australian who emerged through the spray with the quickest time.

After an hour in which it rained hard, then began to dry sufficiently for drivers to switch from Pirelli’s full wets to intermediates, Webber left it late to clock a lap of 1m 27.891s. The Lotuses were his closest challengers as Romain Grosjean improved to 1m 28.195s and Heikki Kovalainen to 1m 28.595s. Behind them, Valtteri Bottas was again impressive for Williams with 1m 28.600s, then came Nico Hulkenberg for Sauber on 1m 28.830s ahead of Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne on 1m 28.921s.

Esteban Gutierrez was out running for much of the session, lapping his Sauber in 1m 29.215s for seventh place ahead of Williams’s Pastor Maldonado on 1m 29.686s and the Force India duo of Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil on 1m 29.736s and 1m 29.913s respectively. Hamilton, whose 1m 29.980s had at one time been the fastest, slipped to 11th as he limited his running. Daniel Ricciardo’s 1m 29.988s just failed to dislodge him further.

The decision of several faster runners not to pursue times enabled Marussia and Caterham to be higher than usual, and it was close between the former’s Jules Bianchi and the latter’s Charles Pic, with 1m 30.635s to 1m 30.837s. Max Chilton was right there with them on 1m 30.972s in the second Marussia. The other Caterham of Giedo van der Garde was not far behind on 1m 31.154s, ahead of Vettel on 1m 31.857s (which had earlier been the fastest), and Perez on 1m 32.731s.

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