SÃ£o Paulo native Rubens Barrichello gave the home crowds something to cheer about when he took pole position for tomorrow's Brazilian Grand Prix in the Saturday qualifying session at Interlagos. Barrichello set a time of 1:13.807 to take pole...
S?o Paulo native Rubens Barrichello gave the home crowds something to cheer about when he took pole position for tomorrow's Brazilian Grand Prix in the Saturday qualifying session at Interlagos. Barrichello set a time of 1:13.807 to take pole from McLaren's David Coulthard by a mere one hundredth of a second.
Running in reverse order from Friday's qualifying results, BAR's Jenson Button was first man out on the track, which was the driest it's been all weekend, and his time was a 1:14.504. He was followed by Justin Wilson, the Minardi man just over two seconds off Button's pace.
Ralph Firman was up next, the Jordan bettering Wilson by seven tenths, and Juan Pablo Montoya was out early for Williams, who set the fastest third sector on his out lap! Into pole, Montoya clocked a 1:14.223. Nick Heidfeld completed the first group of five, the Sauber nearly matching Button's sector times to go third behind the Englishman by just over a tenth.
Jos Verstappen started the next group, squeezing in front of Minardi team mate Wilson by a bare two hundredths. Jordan's Giancarlo Fisichella, who had been struggling in practice, took provisional pole on his lap with a 1:14.191. Ralf Schumacher set the fastest first sector on his flying lap and followed it up with two more to shave just a sliver off Fisichella for pole.
Jarno Trulli was first out for Renault, claiming pole into the 1:13s with 1:13.953, the times edging ever quicker. Cristiano da Matta put his Toyota eighth, ahead of the Minardis, to complete the second group of runners.
Sauber's Heinz-Harald Frentzen took to the track next, slotting into seventh, followed by Malaysia pole man Fernando Alonso. After a slow first sector Alonso picked up the pace but couldn't do better than fifth. Antonio Pizzonia took tenth quickest for Jaguar, disappointing after the good performance so far.
Jacques Villeneuve's BAR settled into eighth, two places behind team mate Button, and next was fastest man from practice, Olivier Panis. The Frenchman could only manage to take tenth from Pizzonia to round off the third group.
Michael Schumacher started the final five, the Ferrari unable to beat Trulli or brother Ralf, slotting into third. McLaren's David Coulthard set the fastest first sector and two more quick ones gave him pole with 1:13.818. Team mate Kimi Raikkonen followed up into second, just a few hundredths behind.
Last two out were Rubens Barrichello and Mark Webber. Barrichello snatched pole from Coulthard by 0.011 which left Webber with a lot of work to do to repeat his top time from yesterday. He couldn't do it but achieved a very respectable third.
Qualifying continues to the produce some very interesting grid positions, it's hardly usual to see Michael Schumacher qualify seventh. The top four were separated by less than a tenth of a second. However, fuel strategy will have played its part and hopefully we can expect an entertaining race tomorrow.
Final top eight classification: Barrichello; Coulthard; Webber; Raikkonen; Trulli; R. Schumacher; M. Schumacher; Fisichella.