More than half an hour later, Webber switched to softer tires and managed to briefly get in the lead, only to be denied of 1st place a few minutes later by the same Vettel (on the same rubber). The German ended P2 with the best time of 1:31.465, almost four tenths of a second ahead of Webber.
Renault's Robert Kubica managed an impressive run on Friday and ended up with the 3rd best time of the pack, just ahead of Ferrari's Fernando Alonso. The Spaniard started off well in P2 and led the classification until the Red Bull drivers took to the track, eventually settling for a time almost 9 tenths of a second slower than Vettel.
Nevertheless, he still managed to finish ahead of teammate Felipe Massa and title rival Jenson Button, both of which finished the day more than a second off the leading pace.
Lewis Hamilton, who had crashed his MP4-25 into the tire barriers at the end of Degner corner in the morning session, only got to drive his car 8 laps late in the P2, thanks to the hard work put up by the McLaren mechanics. He had to settle for the 13th best time but, more importantly, missed out on some valuable dry running on Friday.
Renault have clearly shown they will be a factor in the Sunday race, with Vitaly Petrov joining his teammate Kubica in the Top 10 from 7th place. He was followed by Mercedes' Michael Schumacher, while Adrian Sutil and Nico Hulkenberg completed the Top 10.