Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Hockenheim, 2012

Alonso quickest at Hockenheim as rain returns

2012 German Grand Prix third practice

Posted on

| Written by

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Hockenheim, 2012Fernando Alonso made the most of a mainly dry final practice session to head the times before the rain returned.

Following yesterday’s wet running the drivers were eager to make the most of dry conditions at the start of practice. By the end of the first half-hour most drivers had already logged more than ten laps.

Nico Rosberg led the way initially, reeling off a sequence of rapid laps in his Mercedes. Felipe Massa came close to beating his time before encountering traffic.

Some drivers preferred to use the soft tyres earlier in the session, such as Bruno Senna and Mark Webber, who took turns at the top of the times.

Shortly afterwards their team mates Pastor Maldonado and Sebastian Vettel traded fastest times, Vettel ending up 0.012s to the good with a 1’16.652.

Alonso beat that with a 1’16.124 on soft tyres but a few minutes later Lewis Hamilton was fractionally faster on the mediums – beating Alonso’s time by just 0.033s. Alonso returned to the track on soft tyres later and reclaimed the top spot by 0.077s.

The drivers explored the limits of the Hockenheimring’s run-offs, particularly at turn one where driver after driver ran wide onto the tarmac apron. Romain Grosjean was warned to stop going off at the corner only to run wide there once again.

Massa was also among the many drivers to run wide and he had an especially rough ride when he understeered off at turn 12, bouncing over gravel and grass.

Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button were among those who had not set quick times earlier in the session. They left the pits in the final ten minutes but now the rain returned with a vengeance. Schumacher was able to improve his time but Button slid wide at turn eight and ended up slowest of all.

The drivers returned to the pits as the rain hardened into a downpour and the clock ticked down the final minutes.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
15Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’16.01414
24Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’16.0910.07721
315Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’16.2020.18821
49Kimi RaikkonenLotus-Renault1’16.2380.22427
52Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’16.4470.43319
61Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’16.4750.46118
718Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Renault1’16.6640.65018
86Felipe MassaFerrari1’16.7710.75715
914Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’16.8070.79325
1019Bruno SennaWilliams-Renault1’16.9300.91623
1110Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1’16.9620.94826
1212Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’17.0331.01926
1311Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’17.1481.13424
1416Daniel RicciardoToro Rosso-Ferrari1’17.2381.22426
157Michael SchumacherMercedes1’17.2661.25222
1617Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Ferrari1’17.4191.40523
178Nico RosbergMercedes1’17.4911.47726
1820Heikki KovalainenCaterham-Renault1’18.3662.35221
1921Vitaly PetrovCaterham-Renault1’18.8182.80423
2022Pedro de la RosaHRT-Cosworth1’19.7783.76422
2124Timo GlockMarussia-Cosworth1’20.2354.22122
2225Charles PicMarussia-Cosworth1’20.3184.3049
2323Narain KarthikeyanHRT-Cosworth1’20.7414.72722
243Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’20.9144.90025

Combined German Grand Prix practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2FP3Fri/Sat diffTotal laps
1Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’17.3701’31.2071’16.014-1.35655
2Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’17.0931’30.6171’16.091-1.00259
3Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’17.4131’28.4021’16.202-1.21175
4Kimi RaikkonenLotus-Renault1’18.8311’29.3271’16.238-2.59363
5Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’20.1221’28.8771’16.447-3.67567
6Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’18.3391’27.9021’16.475-1.86463
7Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’16.5951’28.5161’20.914+4.31968
8Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Renault1’18.0201’27.4761’16.664-1.35652
9Felipe MassaFerrari1’17.9951’29.7191’16.771-1.22452
10Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’18.2261’29.7851’16.807-1.41971
11Bruno SennaWilliams-Renault1’30.2911’16.930-13.36145
12Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1’18.1301’28.4201’16.962-1.16867
13Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’17.5991’28.4951’17.033-0.56665
14Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’30.4371’17.148-13.28938
15Daniel RicciardoToro Rosso-Ferrari1’18.7091’28.5131’17.238-1.47179
16Michael SchumacherMercedes1’17.3821’32.7771’17.266-0.11660
17Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Ferrari1’19.0391’29.3641’17.419-1.6283
18Nico RosbergMercedes1’17.9151’27.5641’17.491-0.42477
19Heikki KovalainenCaterham-Renault1’19.9631’30.3311’18.366-1.59771
20Valtteri BottasWilliams-Renault1’18.42228
21Vitaly PetrovCaterham-Renault1’19.6741’32.2411’18.818-0.85669
22Jules BianchiForce India-Mercedes1’18.97221
23Pedro de la RosaHRT-Cosworth1’21.1381’42.5661’19.778-1.3654
24Charles PicMarussia-Cosworth1’20.1691’30.0901’20.318+0.14948
25Timo GlockMarussia-Cosworth1’20.5391’30.2201’20.235-0.30456
26Narain KarthikeyanHRT-Cosworth1’32.3491’20.741-11.60839
27Dani ClosHRT-Cosworth1’21.74027

2012 German Grand Prix

Browse all 2012 German Grand Prix articles

Image ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

9 comments on “Alonso quickest at Hockenheim as rain returns”

  1. Again the gap between the option and the prime looks little…another the option=necessary evil weekend?
    I can’t calculate exact pole time for prediction championship, it’s too changeable. Well, at least it’s almost certain that the race would be dry, so there’s no compromised or gamble setup this weekend. Just need sweet balancing…

    1. Interesting because we saw that with Fernando & Jenson at Silverstone in FP3 as well. Nice to see Sauber & Williams in the mix too, hope the conditions remain constant for quali, though it’s probably unlikely, If you ask me I think we’ve had enough rain shadowing practice & qualifying to an extent.

  2. Its nice that everyone now got a bit of time to see what their new bits do. But its hard to tell who is fast and who isn’t with the varying time when they set their fastest laps.

    I just hope it won’t be too wet in the afternoon, only a bit slippery. And see some superb slippery track driving in qualifying! A Regenmeister pole would be apt here wouldn’t it :-)

    1. Schumacher’s pole would be welcomed by everyone. I’m not sure about Vettel though! :D

      1. Vettel will have an off, damage the car and bring it home in 9th or 10th.

    2. @bascb Correct regarding the different times the fastest laps were set. Different tyres in the mix also doesn’t help understand just what’s going on. I would like a dry qualifying if I’m honest, wanna see where Caterham and McLaren are!

  3. where can I see Buttoms interview of what happen in the car that feel so nice and is great and how confortable he is to WDC ?

    Good job Perez

    1. where can I see Buttoms interview of what happen in the car that feel so nice and is great and how confortable he is to WDC ?

      I’m having a little trouble understanding exactly what you mean by this, but I think the gist of it is that you are criticising Button for claiming he is comfortable in the car and can get back into the championship fight, only to set the slowest time of the session?

      If so, I suggest you re-read the article. Keith makes it pretty clear that Button did not emerge from the pits until late in the session, and by the time he did so, adverse weather had set in, thus limiting his ability to set a competitive lap time. He ran wide – as many other drivers did – on what was set to be his fastest lap, thereby casting him to the bottom of the pile by the end of the session.

      1. equally the fact that JB is bottom suggest there are other variables that have affected his time, at the same time JB is just not gd enough with a unbalanced car, when he has the perfect car he is great, when theres a problem u might as well put luca badoer in for a session, therefore he will never to a great driver until he finds away to do well whatever he has got, like alonso

Comments are closed.