Sebastian Vettel took pole position for the Australian Grand Prix with a stunning lap, where the car was right off the outer edges of the kerbs in ...
Sebastian Vettel took pole position for the Australian Grand Prix with a stunning lap, where the car was right off the outer edges of the kerbs in the final corners. Red Bull team mate Mark Webber finished second 8/100ths of a second behind and Fernando Alonso was a similar margin behind in a qualifying session which lived up to the pre-season billing of being for closeness. It is the first all Red Bull front row. "We just had to nail it," said a delighted Vettel afterwards.
The session was also remarkable for the disappointing performance of Lewis Hamilton, who managed only 11th on the grid, despite a clean lap. It was a major shock as Hamilton had been very confident about his car's performance after third practice. Jenson Button underlined the progress that McLaren has made in one lap performance with fourth place, while Felipe Massa recovered from a difficult start to qualifying where he couldn't get the tyres to warm up. Meanwhile Nico Rosberg again outqualified Michael Schumacher, this time by just 4/100ths of a second.
After the lap, Vettel said on the radio "We will show them" and it was clear from talking to him afterwards that he was talking about Webber to some extent, but more to the F1 community and the public after what happened in Bahrain. Vettel is extremely pumped up this weekend and very motivated to beat Webber on his home soil just as Webber did to him in Nurburgring last year.
"We are all trying to push so hard and get evry single bit out of the car. It's very easy to overshoot on the entry to the corner and have a bad exit. I like the circuit, it's very bumpy and rough. With Mark second it's the best result for the team, "said Vettel. "It's a great achievement and better than having two Ferraris up here."
Webber bore his disappointment well, but he was very disappointed. He was faster than his team mate in sectors one and three, but lost one and a half tenths in the middle sector, "We got the optimum out of the car today and were looking for lap time that wasn't there. I didn't want to repeat the Bahrain mistake. I'm not happy with the order but Seb did a great job today. I took pole off him in Germany last year and we go again tomorrow."
Interestingly the Red Bulls were the slowest cars through the speed trap, so must be making up the time on sheer downforce, while the McLaren continues to top the speed trap times thanks to it's "stalling" rear wing.
1. Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:24.774 1:24.096 1:23.919
2. Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:25.286 1:24.276 1:24.035
3. Alonso Ferrari 1:25.082 1:24.335 1:24.111
4. Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.897 1:24.531 1:24.675
5. Massa Ferrari 1:25.548 1:25.010 1:24.837
6. Rosberg Mercedes 1:24.788 1:24.788 1:24.884
7. Schumacher Mercedes 1:25.351 1:24.871 1:24.927
8. Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:25.702 1:25.085 1:25.217
9. Kubica Renault 1:25.588 1:25.122 1:25.372
10. Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:25.504 1:25.046 1:26.036
11. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:25.046 1:25.184
12. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:26.061 1:25.638
13. Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1:26.170 1:25.743
14. de la Rosa Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.089 1:25.747
15. Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1:25.866 1:25.748
16. Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.251 1:25.777
17. Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:26.095 1:26.089
18. Petrov Renault 1:26.471
19. Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1:28.797
20. Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1:29.111
21. Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:29.592
22. di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1:30.185
23. Senna HRT-Cosworth 1:30.52624. Chandhok HRT-Cosworth 1:30.613
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