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Final practice - Vettel pulls clear at the Nurburgring 06 Jul 2013

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd9, German Grand Prix, Practice, Nurburgring, Germany, Friday, 5 July 2013 Early drama in the Williams garage as the KERS unit on Pastor Maldonado's car fails requiring the attention of fire marshals Complaining of 'huge' oversteer, Lewis Hamilton returns to the Mercedes garage for suspension and set-up changes With two minutes of the session left, Sebastian Vettel drives an immaculate lap to secure first place for Red Bull, taking an astonishing six-tenths out of Nico Rosberg's previous best for Mercedes. The scene is set for a dramatic qualifying

Sebastian Vettel was adamant yesterday that he could never have got close to Mercedes' FP1 pace, but on Saturday morning in FP3 in Germany the Red Bull driver annihilated everybody with the only sub-1m 30s lap that left him 0.676s clear of Nico Rosberg.

The Mercedes driver had held the fastest time of 1m 30.193s when, with minutes to go, Vettel banged in his 1m 29.517s masterpiece to leave his rivals reeling.

Behind the two Germans, Mark Webber was third for Red Bull on 1m 30.211s, chased by an energetic trio comprising the two Ferraris and Kimi Raikkonen's Lotus. Fernando Alonso lapped in 1m 30.621s and was shadowed all the way by team mate Felipe Massa on 1m 30.639s. The Finn dogged them with 1m 30.671s.

Lewis Hamilton had a troubled morning, complaining of handling issues in his Mercedes which left him only seventh on 1m 30.744s, just ahead of Romain Grosjean in the second Lotus on 1m 30.781s, as Nico Hulkenberg gave Sauber a much-needed filip with the ninth fastest time of 1m 30.966s.

That came as a surprise to Force India, who saw Arian Sutil 10th on 1m 31.009s ahead of Jenson Button's McLaren on 1m 31.326s, Esteban Gutierrez on 1m 31.405s for Sauber, and Paul di Resta on 1m 31.733s in the other Force India.

The Toro Rossos sandwiched Sergio Perez's McLaren; Jean-Eric Vergne posted 1m 31.855s, which the Mexican equalled, and Daniel Ricciardo did 1m 31.898s. Pastor Maldonado recorded 1m 31.969s for 17th, not bad given the fact that Williams suffered a major KERS failure on his car this in the morning before FP3. Thankfully, nobody was hurt in the incident.

Valtteri Bottas was 18th on 1m 32.036s in the other Williams, then came Charles Pic for Caterham on 1m 33.230s, Jules Bianchi for Marussia on 1m 33.470s, and their respective team mates Giedo van der Garde on 1m 33.964s and Max Chilton on 1m 34.683s.

It was an intriguing final practice session, which leaves everyone wondering what else Red Bull might have up their sleeves for qualifying.

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