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Pirelli test Abu Dhabi 1: Massa steals the show from Vettel

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Pirelli test in Abu Dhabi 1
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S ebastian Vettel is already back in the racing car. Just five days after his triumphant drive from Abu Dhabi, he left the pit of the Yas Marina Circuit on Friday morning. Instead of the usual time chase, it was mainly about testing new tires. After the departure from Bridgestone, the new tire supplier Pirelli made its first appearance.

With perfect external conditions, the track was busy all day. All drivers received eight sets of tires from Pirelli, which, however, still have to hold up in the second test on Saturday. With the fastest time of the day, Felipe Massa stole the show a little from the new world champion. The lap times with the new rubbers were around two seconds below the level of the junior test on Wednesday, which was still driven on Bridgestone.

Vettel still ahead at lunch break

Until noon, Vettel had led the ranking. In the afternoon Ferrari apparently let some fuel out of Massa's car. In the end, the Brazilian had a good three-tenths advantage over the Red Bull. It was Vettel, of all people, who suffered the only tire damage of the day. 'We don't know why yet,' puzzled the new champion in the evening.

The third best time was noted by Gary Paffett, who took over the McLaren cockpit from Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button. Both regular drivers are not even in action this weekend. Together with Massa, Paffett also drove the most laps (94) on the Yas Marina Circuit on Friday. With fourth place, Kamui Kobayashi also made people sit up and take notice. The Japanese also seems to get along well with Italian rubber.

Problems at Renault and Force India

Fifth place went to Robert Kubica. However, the Renault driver was only able to complete 39 laps on Friday. Renault gave a 'mechanical problem' as the reason for the early evening. This can be anything from engine damage to a jammed screw. Kubica will get another chance on Saturday. As with Red Bull, the French only field one driver on both days.

Behind Rubens Barrichello in the Williams in sixth place, Paul di Resta recorded the seventh-best time. Just like Adrian Sutil, who drove the Force India in the morning, the Scot could only complete 20 laps. A problem with the exhaust kept the car in the garage for a long time through lunchtime. Sutil finished tenth on his fastest lapin the ranking.

Rosberg only with eighth best time

In addition to Vettel and Sutil, there were two other German pilots at the Pirelli premiere. Nico Rosberg finished eighth with the Mercedes. Timo Glock was eleven in the Virgin. The last was Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado at HRT, who will probably replace Nico H├╝lkenberg at Williams next year.

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