Date: 8th April 2011 at 9:35am
Written by:

So far in this Formula One season the word dominates has already been used on a number of occasions.

In Australia it was used to describe Sebastian Vettel’s performances in both qualifying and the race, but for the first practice in Malaysia, the dominant force was once again Red Bull, but this time, it was Australian Mark Webber.

Webber recorded a time of 1minute 37.651 seconds towards the final stages of the session, this was backed up with another time only a couple of tenths of a second slower.

No-one else could get close to the Aussie, with Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren second a whopping 1.665 seconds slower.

Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes was third, over two seconds behind, while Hulkenberg for Force India was fourth and Maldonado fifth for Williams.

Hulkenberg and Maldonado were both 2.7 seconds slower than Webber.

Sebastian Vettel’s agenda for this session was clearly different to Webber’s. The defending World champion was almost four seconds off the pace in 17th.

Ferrari also didn’t look to be too interested in setting fast times with both Alonso and Massa concentrating on set-up.

It was however an eventful session for both the Renault and Virgin teams, but not for any positive reasons.

After just six laps Nick Heidfeld’s session was over when he suffered a front-right brake failure, the tyre locked at turn one and remained locked as Heidfeld brought his car back to the pits. Later in the session team-mate Vitaly Petrov suffered a failure under breaking with his front-left which resulted in the Russian ending his day in the gravel.

Virgin’s Jerome d’Ambrosio suffered a similar fate with his front-left suspension failure on the final corner.