RED BULL took their tenth pole-position out of ten races this season, as Mark Webber took his second straight pole at the Nürburgring ahead of tomorrow’s German Grand Prix.
Webber’s fastest Q3 time was 1:30.079, averaging 127.848-mph around the 3.199-miles (5.148-Km) circuit. McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton will start
the race from second on the grid after setting a 1:30.134. Hamilton had said earlier that he wasn’t expecting to be able to challenge for pole, and described his best lap as: “Wicked!” Reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel will start off the front row of the grid for the first time this season. He only managed to be third fastest in Q3, setting a 1:30.216.
Fourth to tenth on the grid are: 4th) Fernando Alonso (Ferrari), 5th) Felipe Massa (Ferrari), 6th) Nico Rosberg (Mercedes), 7th) Jenson Button (McLaren), 8th) Adrian Sutil (Force India), 9th) Vitaly Petrov (Renault) and 10th) Michael Schumacher (Mercedes).
Q2 saw grid slots 11-17 filled by: 11th) Nick Heidfeld (Renault), 12th) Paul di Resta (Force India), 13th) Pastor Maldonado (Williams), 14th) Rubens Barrichello (Williams), 15th) Sergio Pérez (Sauber), 16th) Sébastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) and 17th) Jaime Alguersuari (Toro Rosso) who made it out of Q1 for the first time since the Spanish Grand Prix.
The unlucky ‘established team’ driver who fell in Q1 was Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi, who will start from 18th on the grid.
19th-last on the grid for the race tomorrow are: 19th) Heikki Kovalainen (Lotus), 20th) Timo Glock (Virgin), 21st) Karun Chandhok (Lotus), 22nd) Jérôme d’Ambrosio (Virgin), 23rd Daniel Ricciardo (HRT) and 24th) Vitantonio Liuzzi (HRT) who would have been 23rd on the grid but has been given a five-place grid drop because he has had his gearbox changed.
Chandhok is racing this weekend for Lotus after the team (rather bizarrely) dropped Jarno Trulli, a veteran of 243 Grand Prix starts. The team say he’ll be back for the Hungarian Grand Prix next weekend, but I can’t help but think this is the end of the F1 road for the Italian.
By the way the 107% Rule time was 1:38.253, which was well beaten by Ricciardo who set a 1:37.036.
There are six German drivers on the grid for this year’s German Grand Prix. They are: Vettel, Schumacher, Rosberg, Heidfeld, Sutil and Glock. If any one of them is going to be the first man to win their home Grand Prix since Massa at the 2008 Brazilian Grand Prix, it will be Vettel. But I reckon Webber will be the man who takes the victory tomorrow.
Previous winners of the German Grand Prix on the grid:
- Michael Schumacher, four-times, 1995 (Benetton) and 2002, 2004 and 2006 for Ferrari.
- Fernando Alonso, twice, 2005 for Renault and 2010 for Ferrari…because he was faster than Felipe.
- Rubens Barrichello, 2000 for Ferrari (his first win).
- Lewis Hamilton, 2008.
- Mark Webber, 2009 (his first win).
Previous winners of the European Grand Prix when it was held at the Nürburgring on the grid:
- Michael Schumacher, five-times, 1995 (Benetton) and 2000, 2001, 2004 and 2006 for Ferrari.
- Fernando Alonso, twice, 2005 for Renault and 2007 for McLaren.
- Rubens Barrichello, 2002 for Ferrari.