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Abu Dhabi 2010 - Free Practice 3 highlights - Lap by lap coverage of Saturday action at Yas Marina

Published by Christine

Vettel puts a lap in.
Credit: Mark Thompson/Getty Images

The sun was shining as Saturday dawned in Abu Dhabi, and there was no sign of the rain showers that hampered running on Friday. It was still a quiet start to the day though, with a few installation laps, some of the mid-table teams completing some laps. It wasn't until about halfway through that we started to see some more meaningful laptimes.

The Red Bull drivers did a good job, with Vettel and Webber leading the pack, and managing to sit out some of the session comfortably in the garage. Hamilton was third, but was heard on the radio complaining quite a lot about grip and tyres. That sounds awfully familiar!

Here's how FP3 unfolded.

As it happened: 2010 Abu Dhabi - Free Practice 3

  • 09:50

    Hello there. How about some impromptu Factbyte Factboxing? This weekend is just too good not to!

  • 09:51

    We've had two practice sessions so far, and coming up today we've got 60 seconds of Saturday practice, followed by the final qualifying of the year.

  • 09:53

    If you are up and about today, why not join us in the live comments? Or use the very fancy dashboard with integrated tweets.

  • 09:55

    If you're in the UK, the BBC are streaming the session: with 5live commentary from David Croft.

  • 09:56

    Autosport will have live text updates minute by minute here: And don't forget your live timing:

  • 09:56

    TweetTweet from @MikeGascoyne: Lovely sunny day here in Abu Dhabi, going to be an interesting day

  • 09:59



    Wind Speed2.9mps
  • 10:00

    Green flagThe session has begun!

  • 10:00

    Trulli leads the pack out, down that really very worrying looking pit exit. A stream of cars follow him.

  • 10:03

    All the drivers have hit the track now, except Button, Hamilton and Kovalainen. They will be out soon, no doubt.

  • 10:03

    Ted Kravitz reports from the pitlane that it is incredibly dusty down in the pitlane - so expect lots of drivers to try setting rubber down in this session.

  • 10:04

    Renault before practiceThe Renault car sans wheels. Obviously this was a bit earlier, as both cars have been out on track now.

  • 10:05

    As the first runners return to the pitlane, the final few head out. Installation laps all round, it seems. Who will be the first to set an official time?

  • 10:06

    Hamilton is on the radio complaining that he's already having a problem with his tyres, and is feeling vibrations.

  • 10:06

    The session results so far this weekend:

    Fastest Session Times
    Free Practice 1Vettel
    Free Practice 2Hamilton1:40.888
  • 10:07

    x2 McLarens pull up outside the garage and are pushed back inside at the same time. It's like synchronised mechanicing. It'll catch on, I'm sure.

  • 10:08

    TweetTweet from @VirginRacing: Lucas reporting there seems to be more rubber on track, logical after the gp2 race. Timo not sure about pressing the speed limiter...

  • 10:08

    What is he not sure about it, I wonder?

  • 10:10

    Abu Dhabi HarbourThe rather delightful harbour, lots of yachts and a multi-coloured hotel in the background. It's not multi-coloured right now, clearly. Disappointing.

  • 10:12

    All drivers have been out for an installation lap now. A bit of a break, but now Di Grassi heads out again. One laptime coming up?

  • 10:12

    Webber and HornerThings look a bit tense on the Red Bull pit wall.

  • 10:13

    TweetTweet from @rf1paddockpass: Both cars in the garage for now, working on adjustments on Vitaly's car. Both drivers remain in the car.

  • 10:15

    In lieu of any laps, Crofty reveals that he and Ant spotted Jerome D'Ambrosio and Eric Boullier discussing something with Virgin bosses post-Brazil. Silly season ahoy!

  • 10:15

    Lucas sets the first laptime of the day - 1:48.532.

  • 10:17

    The lap record around the Yas Marina circuit (albeit from only one weekend's running) is Sebastian Vettel with a 1:40.279, set in 2009 in a Red Bull.

  • 10:18

    Trulli sets a time now, as Lucas improves on his to stay ahead. Glock is also out on track.

  • 10:18

    Hamilton is out of the car, surrounded by Whitmarsh and other team members, and the discussions look quite serious.

  • 10:22

    Glock has just posted a 1:46 to slip into P1, but we're still waiting for signs of the top teams coming out.

  • 10:23

    1:44s on the clock now. Alguersuari ahead. Hulkenberg and Kubica are both out on track.

  • 10:25

    The track temperature has actually fallen slightly, now sitting at 40 degrees.

  • 10:26

    Kubica and Heidfeld post 1:43s, with the Renault popping to the top of the timesheets. Vettel, Massa and Alonso have all left the garage.

  • 10:27

    Button has just left the pitlane as well. Expect the laptimes to begin to fall.

  • 10:29

    Schumacher crosses the line for P1 - 1:42.518.

  • 10:31

    Alonso mid cornerAlonso is following his teammate around the track. He'll hope not to be doing that during the race!

  • 10:31

    Petrov pops up to second, ahead of Kubica. Alonso is currently 4th, with Button 5th. Hamilton remains in the garage.

  • 10:32

    Just over half of the session complete. 28 mins to go.

  • 10:33

    TweetTweet from @WilliamsF1Team: The 3 hour offset is v confusing - it's half 2 and we're only doing practice

  • 10:33

    Vettel posts a 1:41.721 to jump up to P1.

  • 10:34

    Meanwhile, very very far back, Kobayashi has set a time of 1:54.780. That seems woefully off the pace, and thankfully next time round he improves to a 1:46. He's sitting 19th.

  • 10:35

    Hamilton has left the garage now, finally. Just he and Kovalainen have yet to set a time today.

  • 10:36

    QuoteComment from Alianora La Canta: Cascade wing removed from Nico Hulkenburg's car due to broken carbon fibre.

  • 10:38

    Hamilton's first time puts him up in 3rd - 1:41.994. Just Kovi to set a time and we have a full house!

  • 10:40

    Schumacher had a broken front wing, the mechanics are crowding round to inspect the damage. The wings are taking a beating today.

  • 10:40

    Thanks Heikki, now I can use my new widget!

    Field Spread
  • 10:41

    RadioTeam radio to and from Lewis:"Rear tyres have overheated." "Understood, suggest a slower lap before we go again."

  • 10:43

    Vettel and Webber have a Red Bull 1-2 and are both back in the pitlane at the moment. Hamilton also heads back to the garage from 3rd.

  • 10:44

    TweetTweet from @InsideFerrari: Next run will be with soft tyres for everyone.

  • 10:45

    A replay shows Alguersuari running pretty wide, and Nico Rosberg locking up considerably. Kobayashi also has a bit of a wobble. The masses of run-off save them all though, and there are no major incidents.

  • 10:46

    Senna will be happy that he is 21st while Klien is 24th. About 8 tenths between them as well.

  • 10:48

    TweetTweet from @clubforce: Adrian: in general everything seems more balanced, everywhere is just very low grip

  • 10:50

    Vettel is back out on track, hoping to improve on his own P1 time.

  • 10:52

    Under ten minutes remaining now, the soft tyres are on, and the top four are out to improve.

  • 10:53

    Jaime has some speed today!

    Top Speeds
    Sector 1Hamilton294kph
    Sector 2Alguersuari314kph
    Sector 3Hamilton225kph
    Speed TrapAlguersuari316kph
  • 10:54

    Alonso has returned to the garage. Only five drivers in the pitlane at the moment. It's busy out there.

  • 10:56

    Under four minutes to go, and just the Ferrari drivers are in the garage.

  • 10:57

    Trulli has completed the most laps, 19 and counting. Hamilton has the least, having waited so long to come out and struggling with tyres. Just 10 so far for the McLaren driver.

  • 10:58

    Ferrari must be happy with their work as they don't look as though they are going to come back out again.

  • 10:59

    I was wrong! The Ferrari's have come out. Just one minute to go though, so clearly not for a lap.

  • 11:00

    All 24 cars out on track.

  • 11:00

    Chequered flagSession complete.

  • 11:01

    Button messes up his final hot lap, losing the racing line just ahead of the hotel.

  • 11:02

    Senna returns to the pitlane, as the practice starts begin.

  • 11:04
    Top Ten
    1Sebastian Vettel1:40.696
    2Mark Webber1:40.829
    3Lewis Hamilton1:41.280
    4Fernando Alonso1:41.490
    5Jenson Button1:41.578
    6Vitaly Petrov1:41.689
    7Michael Schumacher1:41.690
    8Nico Rosberg1:41.729
    9Robert Kubica1:41.877
    10Nick Heidfeld1:41.893
  • 11:04

    And hey, why not? I have a new widget, and I'm not afraid to use it.

    Field Spread
  • 11:05

    The drivers begin to filter back into the pitlane, and to the safety of their garages.

  • 11:05

    A good hour of work from Red Bull, and Hamilton did the best he could despite tyre trouble throughout. Those top five drivers are in the top five places yet again, so we can read nothing into the session really.

  • 11:06

    Further back, Petrov finished a few places ahead of Kubica, and Heidfeld a few ahead of Kobayashi. If this were qualifying, it would be Buemi dropping out in Q1 with the new teams.

  • 11:06

    Talking of qualifying, a live thread will be up on Sidepodcast in about half an hour, and I'm hoping to be back and Factbyte Factboxing for you as the BBC begin at mid-day. See you then!

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