Sat, Jul 30, 2011 - Page 20 News List

Hamilton fastest in Hungary practice

AP, BUDAPEST

Lewis Hamilton races during first -practice near Budapest yesterday.

Photo: EPA

Lewis Hamilton was fastest in practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix, edging Formula One leader Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso.

Hamilton’s lap of 1 minute, 23.350 seconds around the Hungaroring circuit near Budapest was more than 0.2 seconds faster then Vettel as the McLaren driver followed up on his impressive win in Germany.

Vettel, looking to rebound from a season-low fourth-place finish at the Nuerburgring, guided his Red Bull ahead of Alonso’s Ferrari in cool weather conditions.

Mark Webber of Red Bull was fourth ahead of McLaren’s Jenson Button, despite running off the track and damaging his car’s nose.

The Austrian team said the damage would be repaired in time for the second practice later yesterday. The pair were the only other drivers within half a second of Hamilton.

Felipe Massa of Ferrari led the rest of the field ahead of Mercedes pair Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher.

Vettel still holds a commanding lead in the standings, but McLaren and Ferrari have narrowed the performance gap to Red Bull in recent races.

Vettel, the defending F1 champion, leads Webber by 77 points, Hamilton by 82 points and Alonso by 86.

Tomorrow’s 70-lap race is the last before the sport’s four-week summer break.

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