Forgot Password

 

Register

 

Create your Connect ID

This will allow you to login to all DStv websites & applications




or
Login using
x

Email Reset

 




Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Motorsport | Formula 1

Sebastian Vettel © Gallo Images

Indian GP: Exclusive Qualifying Report



Newly-crowned double F1 world champion Sebastian Vettel took pole position at Buddh, Delhi, for Sunday's first Indian Formula One Grand Prix.

It was Vettel's 28th pole in his short but illustrious career, having just become the sport's youngest double world champion, and he topped the lap charts in the middle and final sessions.

The brand new circuit placed everyone on an even footing with no driver having raced there before, and no setup data available to the teams, but Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari nevertheless set the top six times, the top four separated by just four tenths of a second.

Lewis Hamilton (McLaren-Mercedes) took the battle for pole to Vettel and finished a close second, however a stewards' penalty will drop him to fifth on the grid. Third was Mark Webber in the second Red Bull, followed by Fernando Alonso (Ferrari), Jenson Button (McLaren) and Felipe Massa, who suffered a suspension failure on his Ferrari just before Q3 ended.

The first qualifying session got under way as the two Lotus Renault cars of Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli took to the dusty track.

As in the morning free practice session, the entire circuit was shrouded in thick air pollution in this part of India that made it impossible to see one end of the circuit from the other end.

For their first runs through the smog in Q1, drivers had selected the harder of the two available tyre compounds, saving the softer, faster rubber for Q3 when they would need their best lap times.

Alonso briefly led the session before being bettered by Webber and Hamilton before Vettel set a 1'26.948, a second slower than his best in the morning session.

Michael Schumacher (Mercedes) locked up his left front wheel in the final left-hander leading onto the start-finish straight and ran off the track. He was in tenth on the charts.

Vettel improved to 1'26.218 with Hamilton three tenths behind, followed by Alonso and Massa.

Irrespective of where they finished in qualifying, three drivers would have grid penalties applied to their results. Vitaly Petrov (Renault) would drop five grid places for causing an avoidable accident in the Korean GP, while Hamilton and Sergio Perez (Sauber-Ferrari) would each drop three places after stewards ruled that they had failed to obey yellow flags in the Friday morning free practice.

Timo Glock (Virgin-Cosworth) managed to complete only three laps before parking his car in the garage with a gearbox problem.

Button, who was a pace-setter in the morning practice, radioed his pit to report that he had very poor grip. He was in 15th place at the time and elected to pit for soft tyres and one flying lap. He began the lap with just ten seconds remaining on the clock and punched in the third-fastest time.

Petrov was the surprise of the session, setting the fastest time of 1'26.189, followed by Vettel, Button, Adrian Sutil (Force India-Mercedes) and Nico Rosberg (Mercedes).

First Session Drop-Outs

18 Kamui Kobayashi JAP Sauber 1'27.876
19 Heikki Kovalainen FIN Lotus 1'28.565
20 Jarno Trulli ITA Lotus 1'28.752
21 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Hispania 1'30.216
22 Narain Karthikeyan IND Hispania 1'30.238
23 Jerome d'Ambrosio BEL Virgin 1'30.866
24 Timo Glock GER Virgin 1'34.046

Jaime Alguersuari (Toro Rosso-Ferrari) set the fastest time of 1'26.668 in the early part of Q2, making amends for his error on Friday when he crashed into the barriers and broke his rear suspension.

Vettel went straight to the top with a 1'24.657 as Bruno Senna (Renault) ran wide off the track but returned without further incident.

Webber was second and being chased by Button in third, the two separated by just one hundredth of a second

Massa made a mess of Turn 8 as he tried to improve his fourth-fastest time. Hamilton slotted up into second, just under half a second off Vettel's pace.

With only five minutes left on the clock, neither Force India car had yet ventured out, but they then gambled everything on a single outing. Sutil went 13th on his first hot lap with di Resta going 12th. Sutil's next run gave him eighth with di Resta unchanged in 12th.

Seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher failed to make it into Q1 again, qualifying five places below his Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg.

Vettel won Q2 from Hamilton, Alonso, Webber and Button.

Second Session Drop-Outs

11 Vitaly Petrov RUS Renault 1'26.319
12 Michael Schumacher GER Mercedes 1'26.337
13 Paul di Resta GBR Force India 1'26.503
14 Pastor Maldonado VEN Williams 1'26.537
15 Bruno Senna BRA Renault 1'26.651
16 Rubens Barrichello BRA Williams 1'27.247
17 Sergio Perez MEX Sauber 1'27.562 

 Alonso and Massa set the pace in Q3 before Vettel posted a 1'24.437, the fastest time ever recorded at Buddh, followed by Hamilton just four hundredths slower, with the top four (Vettel, Hamilton, Webber and Alonso) covered by just a tenth of a second!

After the first flurry of activity, the cars returned to the pits for a set of soft compound tyres and with two minutes left on the clock, emerged for one final fling at pole position.

Neither Ferrari was running the bizarre and illegal oscillating front wing that dragged on the ground in the morning session in a shower of sparks.

Hamilton fluffed his middle sector and abandoned his run, while Massa had the front suspension of his Ferrari break off in a right-hand corner, pitching him off the track and into the wall.

2011 Indian F1 Grand Prix - Qualifying Lap Times
Pos Driver Nat Team Time
1 Sebastian Vettel GER Red Bull 1'24.178
2 Lewis Hamilton GBR McLaren 1'24.474*
3 Mark Webber AUS Red Bull 1'24.508
4 Fernando Alonso ESP Ferrari 1'24.519
5 Jenson Button GBR McLaren 1'24.950
6 Felipe Massa BRA Ferrari 1'25.122
7 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes 1'25.451
8 Adrian Sutil GER Force India no time
9 Sébastien Buemi SUI Toro Rosso no time
10 Jaime Alguersuari ESP Toro Rosso no time
11 Vitaly Petrov RUS Renault 1'26.319*
12 Michael Schumacher GER Mercedes 1'26.337
13 Paul di Resta GBR Force India 1'26.503
14 Pastor Maldonado VEN Williams 1'26.537
15 Bruno Senna BRA Renault 1'26.651
16 Rubens Barrichello BRA Williams 1'27.247
17 Sergio Perez MEX Sauber 1'27.562*
18 Kamui Kobayashi JAP Sauber 1'27.876
19 Heikki Kovalainen FIN Lotus 1'28.565
20 Jarno Trulli ITA Lotus 1'28.752
21 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Hispania 1'30.216
22 Narain Karthikeyan IND Hispania 1'30.238
23 Jerome d'Ambrosio BEL Virgin 1'30.866
24 Timo Glock GER Virgin 1'34.046

*Due to penalties to be applied, Petrov will drop back five places on the grid and Perez and Hamilton three places each.

Shop

Lewis Hamilton: My story
Lewis Hamilton’s explosive arrival on the Formula 1 scene has made front-page headlines
R112.64
Psychology of motorsport success
Motorsport is a highly addictive and extremely exciting activity
R369.89


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Live Video Streaming

Fri, 18 Apr @ 05:00
Sat, 19 Apr @ 05:00
Sat, 19 Apr @ 07:50
Sat, 19 Apr @ 09:00

Sports Talk



Guest Column
Fit as an F1 driver
Nico Rosberg turns around with a grin during a slight uphill section, shouting "Hey, what's the...

Reuters on Motorsport
Team prospects for the 2013 F1 season
Team-by-team prospects for the Formula One season starting in Melbourne, Australia, on March.