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RED BULL’S Sebastian Vettel took pole for his home Grand Prix yesterday by an incredibly small margin.

The German’s Q3 time was a 1:13.791, lapping the Hockenheim circuit at 138.651 mph. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso will line up alongside Vettel, after setting a time that was just 0.002 seconds slower. Alonso’s Ferrari team-mate Felipe Massa will start the race from third.

The rest of the top ten from fourth to tenth are: Webber (Red Bull), Button & Hamilton (McLaren), Kubica (Renault), Barrichello (Williams), Rosberg (Mercedes) and Hülkenberg (Williams).

Michael Schumacher again failed to make it into Q3, this time missing out but only 0.008 seconds. It’s true; F1 is a sport of fractions.

Force India didn’t have a great qualifying by any stretch of the imagination. Firstly Adrian Sutil will start down in 19th place after being bumped five places for having his gearbox changed. But the real pain for the team came when Vitantonio Liuzzi put his left-rear tyre on a damp patch exiting the last corner, lost control of his car and crashed into the pit wall. The front end of his car was destroyed and one of his wheels bounced across the track, causing Virgin’s Timo Glock to take evasive action in order a avoid it. The red flag stopped the session while the marshals cleared the debris away. Nobody was hurt.

Glock himself will start last after receiving two five place grid penalties. One of these was for having his gearbox changed; the other for having a seventh-gear ratio put on his car that wasn’t declared on Friday.

I believe that Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso will win this race. Ferrari have been building towards this race for many weeks now, and given that they have felt hard done by in the last two races, it seems that the prancing horse is bucking.


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