Ralf on Friday provisional pole for German GP

Ralf on Friday provisional pole for German GP

Ralf Schumacher lead the way in Friday's qualifying session for the German Grand Prix, ahead of teammate Juan Pablo Montoya for a provisional Williams one-two. Ralf set a best of 1:14.427 with Montoya just a couple of tenths behind and half a...

Ralf Schumacher lead the way in Friday's qualifying session for the German Grand Prix, ahead of teammate Juan Pablo Montoya for a provisional Williams one-two. Ralf set a best of 1:14.427 with Montoya just a couple of tenths behind and half a second ahead of third placed Jarno Trulli for Renault.

Ralf Schumacher.
Photo by Brousseau Photo.
Championship leader Michael Schumacher, who was eleventh in the practice session, started the first qualifying. The Ferrari clocked 1:15.456, slightly faster than McLaren's David Coulthard's best time in practice. Second man out after Schumacher, Kimi Raikkonen put his McLaren on to provisional pole with 1:15.276, just a couple of tenths quicker.

Juan Pablo Montoya was the first Williams on track and was quickest in the first sector. He matched Raikkonen in the second and saved a tenth in the third for provisional pole of 1:14.673.Teammate Ralf Schumacher followed on and was slightly off Montoya's pace at first but picked up rapidly to post 1:14.427 for the best time. Rubens Barrichello was the last of the first group and slotted into fourth ahead of Michael.

Renault's Fernando Alonso kicked off the second group and was on the pace, beating both Ferraris and Raikkonen for third quickest but half a second off the Williams pair. David Coulthard couldn't carry through his pace from practice and only managed seventh, over a second off provisional pole.

Jarno Trulli matched teammate Alonso in sector one, lost out slightly in two but picked up in three to take third place from Fernando by two tenths. Mark Webber was the first Jaguar out and was on the pace in the first two sectors and stepped up slightly in the last to go fourth quickest and split the two Renaults. Jenson Button, who was the fastest Bridgestone runner in practice, rounded off the group with a mediocre lap for tenth.

Giancarlo Fisichella's Jordan was already down some three tenths on Button in sector one and finished eleventh, over two and a half seconds off pole. Heinz-Harald Frentzen was the first Sauber and managed to take the position from Fisichella and first Toyota Cristiano da Matta slotted in behind. Jacques Villeneuve had some problem and spun, failing to set a time in the BAR.The second Toyota of Olivier Panis had a good effort to make the top ten in ninth.

The final group started with Nick Heidfeld and the Sauber lost a lot of time in the middle sector but managed thirteenth. Ralph Firman was faster than Jordan teammate Fisichella through the first sector which was enough to put him ahead of the Italian.

Jos Verstappen was first out for Minardi and posted nineteenth and was followed by ex-teammate Justin Wilson. Now in the Jaguar, Wilson had an excellent first qualifying for the team, going seventh fastest, ahead of both Ferraris and just three and a half tenths behind teammate Webber. Minardi rookie Nicolas Kiesa had a dismal first qualifying when he ground to a halt on his out lap with a problem.

The Williams duo was unassailable at the front while Renault and Jaguar had a good time of things. McLaren was mediocre while Ferrari was bafflingly off the pace in eighth and ninth. Michelin held the fort with the top seven positions, Barrichello being the best Bridgestone runner in eighth. However, as always, tomorrow is when it really counts. Final top eight classification: R. Schumacher, Montoya, Trulli, Webber, Alonso, Raikkonen, Wilson, Barrichello.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , McLaren , Williams , Minardi , Jordan