Rosberg stays fastest in second practice

Rosberg stays fastest in second practice

23 May 2013 – Nico Rosberg remained in charge during the second practice session for the Monaco Grand Prix on Thursday afternoon. The Mercedes driver posted a time of 1:14.759 on the Super Soft tyres to lead team-mate Lewis Hamilton by 0.318 seconds, with Ferrari pairing Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa in close company.

With the track temperature increasing by 10°C (50°F) between the first and second practice sessions, most drivers were quick to head out for a run on the Soft rubber to evaluate the conditions. Alonso was the fastest man at the end of this phase, but the Mercedes duo quickly regained authority when the switch to Super Softs arrived.

Rosberg posted overall best sector times through all three segments of his quickest effort, putting him comfortably clear of his nearest rivals before Hamilton improved. Alonso looked ragged throughout this afternoon's session, moving under braking on numerous occasions, but he avoided serious drama to hold off team-mate Massa.

Mark Webber again led Red Bull's charge in fifth position, just ahead of Lotus rival Kimi Räikkönen. The latter's team-mate, Romain Grosjean, sat two tenths further back, but his session was ended early after hitting the barriers at Sainte Devote. The Frenchman picked up major front-left car damage, citing cold tyres as the cause.

Jenson Button put McLaren inside the top ten for the first time this weekend, claiming eighth on the timing screens with his best Super Soft run. Sebastian Vettel was next up in ninth after a significant delay in the early stages of the session, while Paul di Resta completed the top ten runners, edging out team-mate Adrian Sutil whose car suffered no lasting effects from his crash at the end of the opening practice session.

Jules Bianchi this time led the tail-end fight for Marussia, the Frenchman ending the session just over six tenths of a second slower than nearest midfield runner Valtteri Bottas. Charles Pic finished as the leading Caterham driver, enjoying an improved afternoon setup, with Max Chilton and Giedo van der Garde bringing up the rear.

Saturday morning’s third and final practice session in Monte-Carlo begins at 11am local time (GMT +2) and can be tracked via the GPUpdate.net live report feature

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