led team mate Mark Webber
in another Red Bull one-two in New Delhi on Friday afternoon, as Lotus
's Romain Grosjean
finished best of the rest in second practice for the 2013 Formula 1 Airtel Indian Grand Prix.
Vettel, who also topped Practice One on Friday morning, was the only man to dip below 1m 26s in an intriguing session that saw all the drivers struggling with front tyre wear on the softer compound rubber.
Vettel, Webber, Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen
and Romain Grosjean, and Mercedes
' Nico Rosberg
all had turns at the top of the timesheet before the reigning world champion stamped his authority as everyone switched from Pirelli
's medium tyres to the softs. Vettel's lap of 1m 25.722s remained unbeatable thereafter, with Webber the closest on 1m 26.011s. Grosjean, however, kept the Red Bull drivers on their toes with 1m 26.220s, and Lewis Hamilton
moved up to fourth for Mercedes with 1m 26.399s. Fernando Alonso
also got going, with the fifth fastest time of 1m 26.430s for Ferrari
ahead of Rosberg's 1m 26.582s, Felipe Massa
's 1m 26.601s in the other Ferrari, Raikkonen's 1m 26.632s and the 1m 26.857s and 1m 26.972s bests that Sergio Perez
and Jenson Button
summoned for McLaren
's Toro Rosso was next up on 1m 27.304s, but the times in the lower midfield were as tight as ever with Adrian Sutil
's Force India
close behind on 1m 27.375s ahead of Valtteri Bottas
on 1m 27.429s, Nico Hulkenberg
on 1m 27.491s, Paul di Resta
's Force India on 1m 27.608s, Pastor Maldonado
's Williams on 1m 27.720s and Esteban Gutierrez
's Sauber on 1m 27.949s.
Maldonado provided some drama when, shortly after a pit stop, he had a repetition of his experience on Friday morning in Suzuka when his Williams lost a wheel nut. This time it was the right-front tyre that was the focus of attention, but unlike Japan the wheel retention system worked and he reacted quickly to feeling the wheel nut parting company with the car and was able to bring the FW35 to a safe halt. As the second such incident in two races, Williams are facing another fine from the stewards.
At the bottom of the timesheet, Jean-Eric Vergne
was 18th in the second Toro Rosso on 1m 28.431s, as Giedo van der Garde
stayed ahead of his main rivals at the back by lapping his Caterham in 1m 28.692s. Jules Bianchi
was again his closest challenger for Marussia
with 1m 28.799s as Charles Pic
lapped in 1m 29.366s in the second Caterham and Max Chilton
in 1m 30.164s in the other Marussia. (Formula1.com)