Webber Paces Day One In Barcelona

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BARCELONA, Spain – Mark Webber sent Red Bull to the top of the timesheets for the first time this year as pre-season testing resumed at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain on Thursday.

The Australian set his fastest time of the day on soft tyres in the final half hour of the afternoon session after heavy rain had blighted much of the running in the morning.

Interestingly, Webber is now the ninth different driver to top the times in the nine days of pre-season testing so far.

In the same late afternoon flurry of activity that saw Webber set his quickest lap, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton clocked the second-fastest time. The 2008 world champion, who headed the times in the morning, completed 113 laps – the most of any driver on the day.

Third quickest on the day, having completed 59 laps, was Jean-Eric Vergne in the Toro Rosso STR8. Williams’ rookie Valtteri Bottas was fourth fastest as the team continued to accumulate mileage in the FW35.

Marginally slower than Bottas were the Mexican duo of Sergio Perez – in the McLaren MP4-28 – and Esteban Gutierrez in the Sauber C32. Paul di Resta was seventh fastest for Force India, although Adrian Sutil was the team’s biggest media draw, having had his race seat announced over the lunch break.

Felipe Massa was eighth for Ferrari, but completed the second-most laps of the day – 112 – as he undertook aerodynamic tests in the morning and a race simulation in the afternoon.

Marussia’s Max Chilton and Caterham’s Charles Pic rounded out the top ten, with Lotus’s Romain Grosjean a distant 11th for Lotus after having a minor off in the morning session and then spending the afternoon conducting work on the team’s double-DRS device.

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