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Silverstone day three - Vettel quickest on final day of test 19 Jul 2013

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Adrian Sutil (GER) Force India VJM06.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Nicholas Prost (FRA) Lotus E21..
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Susie Wolff (GBR) Williams FW35 makes a pit stop.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Rodolfo Gonzalez (VEN) Marussia F1 Team MR02 stops on track.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Kimiya Sato (JPN) Sauber C32.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari F138.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Gary Paffett (GBR) McLaren MP4-28.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013 Kimiya Sato (JPN) Sauber C32.
Formula One Young Drivers Test, Silverstone, England, Day Three, Friday, 19 July 2013

World championship-leader Sebastian Vettel led the way for Red Bull as this week’s young driver test drew to a close at Silverstone on Friday.

Vettel, who like all race drivers was allowed to participate in the session for tyre testing purposes only, clocked the quickest time of the week in the afternoon - a 1m 32.894s - after taking over the RB9 from morning runner Carlos Sainz Jr.

The German completed 79 laps on the revised Pirelli tyres (which are the 2012-specification construction combined with the 2013 compounds) that will be used from next weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix onwards.

“Obviously, we were very limited on what we could do, but for me there is not that much difference with the tyres,” commented Vettel. “It was good to get in some laps though, good to get a feeling for them and it’s always nice to drive at Silverstone.”

Adrian Sutil’s morning session effort was good enough to give the Force India driver the second fastest time of the day. ‘A bit easier to handle’ was his verdict on the revised Pirellis. Meanwhile, Nicolas Prost was third quickest in the Lotus after improving his time in the afternoon, the Frenchman focussing on set-up and aero work, as well as evaluating a new exhaust.

Sainz, who sampled the Toro Rosso STR8 yesterday, ended up fourth quickest after his Red Bull run, commenting: “It was not an easy day and the nerves were definitely there. In the end though, it all went smoothly and there were no major issues. I enjoyed the work and tried to do my best in terms of giving feedback to the team. It’s a big boost for my self-confidence, but I’m 18-years-old, still very young and still learning. There’s a long way to go.”

The Ferrari pair of Davide Rigon and Felipe Massa were fifth and sixth. “It seems to me these tyres work better, at least compared to what we saw in the race here” said Massa at the end of his morning session. “Over the three days, no one had any problems and from the safety aspect, this is the most important thing. The prototype hard seemed maybe too hard to race on. I think that in the coming Grands Prix we could head towards a choice of the softer compounds, because they can work at lower temperatures and last longer.

“Temperature has a significant effect on our car and here for the race for example, it did not help us, but let’s see what happens in Hungary, where we can expect hotter conditions. You need a lot of aerodynamic downforce there and let’s hope we can find the right solutions to be competitive.”

Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne took seventh, while Gary Paffett ended the day with the eighth best time, his morning running severely curtailed by mechanical problems on his McLaren.

“It was great to get out in the afternoon and get some testing done after the engine issue we had this morning,” said Paffett. “The guys in the garage did a great job. It was a real treat to drive the car - most of the work we do nowadays is on the simulator in Woking. We get very limited time out on track. So it’s great to get back in the car - it’s invaluable for us to make sure we are going in the right direction.”

Marginally slower than Paffett was fellow Briton, and Williams’ development driver, Susie Wolff. She spent the morning session doing aero work before undertaking pit stop practice in the afternoon for a total of 89 laps.

Russian youngster Daniil Kvyat completed 22 laps on his Toro Rosso debut before plunging the STR8 into the gravel. He finished 11th fastest, between the Caterham’s of Giedo van der Garde and Charles Pic.

“I want to thank Red Bull and Scuderia Toro Rosso for giving me this opportunity to drive a Formula 1 car for the first time,” said Kvyat. “It was a really nice feeling, with all that downforce and power. The more laps you do, the more you get used to it and on my last run, I was already trying to push and find the limits.

“Unfortunately, we lost some time when I made a mistake and ran into the gravel. I’m not sure what happened, I just felt a lack of grip at the rear from the tyres and had snap oversteer.”

Kvyat’s fellow debutant, Kimiya Sato, was 13th fastest for Sauber, ahead of Marussia’s Rodolfo Gonzalez who spun to a halt in the morning session.

“Once again I’ve been very happy to be back in the car as the more mileage and experience I can gather, the better,” said Gonzalez.

“I’ll be running in FP1 again in Hungary so the work I have done here this week will benefit me for sure. The morning was not entirely smooth as I had a couple of spins out on track; nothing more than perhaps trying to push a little too hard on my performance runs after having focused more on the development work.

“It has been a good part of the learning curve so I am looking forward to putting this into practice again next week.”

The final two slots on the timesheet were occupied by Force India’s James Calado (who only completed five laps) and Marussia’s Jules Bianchi whose running was blighted by a mechanical issue.

Unofficial Friday test times from Silverstone:
1. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, 1:32.894, 79 laps
2. Adrian Sutil, Force India, 1:33.242, 99 laps
3. Nicolas Prost, Lotus, 1:33.256, 83 laps
4. Carlos Sainz Jr, Red Bull, 1:33.546, 35 laps
5. Davide Rigon, Ferrari, 1:33.592, 20 laps
6. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:33.624, 69 laps
7. Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, 1:33.647, 42 laps
8. Gary Paffett, McLaren, 1:34.924, 77 laps
9. Susie Wolff, Williams, 1:35.093, 89 laps
10. Giedo van der Garde, Caterham, 1:35.155, 65 laps
11. Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1:35.281, 22 laps
12. Charles Pic, Caterham, 1:35.576, 60 laps
13. Kimiya Sato, Sauber, 1:35.642, 67 laps
14. Rodolfo Gonzalez, Marussia, 1:36.339, 24 laps
15. James Calado, Force India, 1:36.451, 5 laps
16. Jules Bianchi, Marussia, 1:36.744, 39 laps

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