Sebastian Vettel lapped quickest as Red Bull set the pace in the opening free practice session of this weekend's Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos.
More than half of the session had passed by the time the front runners ventured out for some meaningful track time, and once they were going Vettel and Webber led quite comfortably. Vettel, Mark Webber and Lewis Hamilton were the only drivers to break into the 1m12sec, though the latter two were half a second away from the German's pace.
Ferrari was well off the pace, so the McLarens of Hamilton and Jenson Button filled third and fourth spots. Hamilton spent much of the session sampling different front wing setups, while Button pledged to gamble at any opportunity due to his slim title chances and had his rear wing changed during the 90 minutes.
Robert Kubica and Nico Rosberg were once again the best of the rest in fifth and sixth, with the session's early pace setters Rubens Barrichello and Michael Schumacher seventh and eighth. The Saubers of Nick Heidfeld and Kamui Kobayashi rounded out the top 10, though the Japanese finished the session in the wall after spinning on his last lap.
Behind Nico Hulkenberg's Williams, championship leader Fernando Alonso was only 12th with Ferrari apparently electing to take it easy this early in the weekend.
Alonso parked his car out on track in the final minute of the session due to concerns over the engine, though the team had already stated that it will change the engine in his car before this afternoon's FP2.
Home hero Felipe Massa was one of the first front runners to go out, but he scurried back to the pits to try to chase understeer out of his car and never really got up to speed after that – ending up behind his teammate in 14th.
Vitaly Petrov's best time left him 15th but, like Kobayashi, his practice ended in the wall at the Ferradura right hander after spinning off.
Jarno Trulli's Lotus was the quickest of the new teams, quarter of a second ahead of Timo Glock. Jerome D'Ambrosio was 22nd in the second Virgin, while Christian Klien – in at HRT for Sakon Yamamoto – was half a second faster than Bruno Senna.
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:12.328 23
2. Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:12.810 + 0.482 27
3. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:12.845 + 0.517 24
4. Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:13.267 + 0.939 23
5. Kubica Renault 1:13.370 + 1.042 23
6. Rosberg Mercedes 1:13.516 + 1.188 25
7. Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:13.546 + 1.218 25
8. Schumacher Mercedes 1:13.643 + 1.315 24
9. Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:13.918 + 1.590 25
10. Heidfeld Sauber-Ferrari 1:14.000 + 1.672 22
11. Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:14.004 + 1.676 23
12. Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1:14.155 + 1.827 28
13. Alonso Ferrari 1:14.246 + 1.918 20
14. Massa Ferrari 1:14.267 + 1.939 25
15. Petrov Renault 1:14.370 + 2.042 23
16. Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1:14.487 + 2.159 25
17. Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:14.618 + 2.290 29
18. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:14.734 + 2.406 28
19. Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1:15.603 + 3.275 24
20. Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:15.860 + 3.532 20
21. Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1:16.057 + 3.729 25
22. d'Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1:16.707 + 4.379 27
23. Klien HRT-Cosworth 1:16.839 + 4.511 18
24. Senna HRT-Cosworth 1:17.360 + 5.032 29
All Timing Unofficial