Hungarian GP: Bridgestone Saturday qualifying notes

Fernando Alonso (McLaren Mercedes) has set pole position at the Hungaroring on Bridgestone's soft compound Potenza after a close fought session where his team-mate Lewis Hamilton set the second fastest time on the super soft compound. Alonso ...

Fernando Alonso (McLaren Mercedes) has set pole position at the Hungaroring on Bridgestone's soft compound Potenza after a close fought session where his team-mate Lewis Hamilton set the second fastest time on the super soft compound.

Alonso gained his pole in the closing seconds of the last session whilst Hamilton just missed being able to make a final run. Although in the same Vodafone McLaren Mercedes MP4-22 cars, each driver found a different one of the two Bridgestone compounds worked better for them in the intense qualifying sessions. Alonso's time of 1min 19.674secs on the soft compound was just over a tenth faster than Hamilton's 1min 19.781secs on the super soft. The day's fastest lap, 1min 19.301secs, was set by Hamilton in Q2 on the super soft compound.

The second row for tomorrow's race consists of BMW Sauber driver Nick Heidfeld, who set his time on the soft, and Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen who set his time on the super soft.

The morning practice session saw Felipe Massa (Ferrari) go fastest, setting a time of 1min 20.183 secs on the soft compound with 18 minutes left to go in the session. Most of the running in the morning took place on the soft compound, with the super soft being used late in the hour-long session. Massa was unable to make the cut into final qualifying and will start tomorrow's race from 14th place on the grid.

Kees van de Grint, Bridgestone Motorsport Head of Track Engineering Operations:

"For the first time this year we saw a significant variation in the tyre compound use in qualifying. Although the super soft compound Bridgestone Potenza is certainly ambitious here, to me it was the quickest tyre over a lap if the start of the graining could be delayed. If not, then the soft was the better choice."

"Graining, like yesterday, was the major area of talk about the tyres, particularly on the super soft compound, but this affected different cars and drivers to varying degrees. The overnight rain did not help matters, but we know this track improves very quickly as rubber is laid down. After looking at how the super soft compound performed in the fuel-burning phase of Q3, I am confident that it will enable a decent stint in the race, although I am pretty certain it will not be the favoured tyre."

Stats of the Day
Total amount of laps completed by all drivers: 731 laps
Average number of laps per car: 33 laps
Most laps by a driver: 47 laps - Giancarlo Fisichella
Fastest lap: 1m 19.301s - Hamilton in Q2
Compounds: Soft and super soft

-credit: bridgestone

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Nick Heidfeld , Kimi Raikkonen , Fernando Alonso , Lewis Hamilton , Felipe Massa
Teams Ferrari , Mercedes , Sauber , McLaren