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Vettel fastest in F1 testing as Lotus debuts

JEREZ, Spain (AP) — Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel opened Formula One's penultimate test session by setting the fastest lap, while returning team Lotus made its track debut.

Vettel set a best time of 1 minute, 22.593 seconds from 99 laps around the Jerez Circuit on Wednesday as wet conditions once again hampered testing.

McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton was nearly half a second behind, Felipe Massa of Ferrari was third, while Sebastien Buemi of Toro Rosso and Sauber's Pedro De la Rosa rounded out the top-five.

Michael Schumacher of Mercedes GP was sixth with a time of 1:23.803 from a day-high 111 laps.

Fairuz Fauzy set the 11th fastest time for Lotus, which is returning to F1 with Malaysian backing after a 17-year absence.