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Ferrari's Alonso betters Mercedes drivers in opening practice for Singapore GP

  • Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain waits in his team garage at the Marina Bay City Circuit for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix in Singapore, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014 in Singapore. The F1 race is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 21.(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain waits in his team garage at the Marina Bay City Circuit for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix in Singapore, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014 in Singapore. The F1 race is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 21.(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)  (The Associated Press)

  • Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg of Germany waves to the crowd from his team garage at the Marina Bay City Circuit for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix in Singapore, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014 in Singapore. The F1 race is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 21.(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg of Germany waves to the crowd from his team garage at the Marina Bay City Circuit for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix in Singapore, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014 in Singapore. The F1 race is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 21.(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)  (The Associated Press)

  • Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso of Spain steers his car during the first practice session for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix on the Marina Bay City Circuit in Singapore, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. In the background, the Singapore financial skyline is seen. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

    Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso of Spain steers his car during the first practice session for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix on the Marina Bay City Circuit in Singapore, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. In the background, the Singapore financial skyline is seen. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)  (The Associated Press)

Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso set the fastest time in the opening practice session for the Singapore Grand Prix, upstaging the Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg on Friday.

Alonso relished the tight confines of the Marina Bay street circuit, setting a time of 1 minute, 49.056 seconds — a tenth of a second ahead of second-place Hamilton, withhird-place Rosberg only two hundredths of a second off the pace of his teammate and championship rival.

The Red Bull pair of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo finished fourth and fifth on the timesheets, with Ricciardo the only realistic threat to the Mercedes drivers in the title race, and forecasting a strong race on a circuit that suits his car.