Saturday, September 10, 2011

Italian GP: Qualifying

Apologies for missing out the Belgian Grand Prix, but F1 returns to the northern Italian town of Monza this weekend. Possibly the first dry race for a while so drivers' race pace and tyre choices will play a big role in deciding the results. 
Italian GP Paddock (photo by @VoxVocis)
The weekend started with 'cambergate' after which FIA enforced a tyre camber setting of 3.25° after RedBull's tyres blistered excessively in the last race.

The first part of Qualifying session Q1 saw Trulli first to step out onto the Monza track. The usual suspects of RBR, McLaren and Ferrari swapped places at the top of the timesheets and the session was momentarily yellow-flagged due to Pastor Maldonado's excursion. Drivers who dropped out after Q1 were Alguersuari, Trulli, Kovalainen, Glock, D'Ambrosio, Ricciardo, Liuzzi. 

In Q2, the best time of 1min22.914 was set by (no surprise) Red Bull driver, Sebastian Vettel. Drivers who didn't make it into Q3 were di Resta, Sutil, Barrichello, Maldonado, Perez, Buemi, Kobayashi. Di Resta was knocked out of Q3 in the last few seconds of the session by Bruno Senna, who continues to show great qualifying pace after replacing Nick Heidfeld in the Lotus-Renault team.
Bruno Senna (photo by RM)
Ferrari was the first car out in Q3 in the 10-minute session and were greated by loud applause from the fans. Every driver seemed to be seeking out other drivers to derive a tow from. But eventually, Vettel took pole position from Hamilton. Other drivers making the Top 10 are Button, Alonso, Webber, Massa, Petrov, Schumacher, Rosberg and Senna.

McLaren Pitwall (
Top Three Drivers for Italian GP (photo from BBC Website)
The Italian fans (tifosi) will be hoping for a win by Ferrari and both drivers starting from 4th (Alonso) and 6th (Massa) will try all they can not to disappoint the adoring fans.