Sebastian Vettel fastest in practice
GREATER NOIDA, India -- Sebastian Vettel continued his dominance in India by edging Red Bull teammate Mark Webber for the quickest time Friday in the opening practice for the Formula One Indian Grand Prix.
Vettel recorded 1 minute, 26.683 seconds for a lap of the Buddh International Circuit, just 0.188 faster than fierce rival Webber.
Vettel, who has won both previous Indian GP races from the pole, can seal his fourth straight world title by placing fifth or better Sunday.
Massa's Ferrari teammate Fernando Alonso had a frustrating start, completing just six laps before being forced into the pits with a gearbox issue and ending the morning with the 12th-fastest time.
The drivers had trouble gripping the smooth Noida surface, with Williams driver Pastor Maldonado and McLaren's Sergio Perez both spinning out onto the grass at Turn 6 before returning to the track without serious damage to their cars.
Tire supplier Pirelli has dropped the more durable hard compound tires for the Indian surface, instead opting for soft and medium options.
Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press