Recent winner Rosberg paces field again

Nico Rosberg was fastest in the second practice at the controversial Bahrain Grand Prix on Friday, as safety concerns over anti-government protests prompted Force India to skip the session.

Rosberg, who won the Chinese Grand Prix last week for his first Formula One victory, clocked 1 minute, 32.816 seconds in his Mercedes around the 3.4-mile Bahrain International Circuit. That was 0.446 seconds quicker than Red Bull’s Mark Webber and 0.709 seconds better than two-time defending champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull.

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, who was fastest in the first practice, was fourth.

Ferrari improved on a dismal first session, but Fernando Alonso still was eighth and Felipe Massa 12th.