Saturday, October 8, 2011

Japanese GP: Qualifying

Japanese Qualifying had some elements of surprise but not for who got pole position. McLaren's Hamilton found some good pace that he didn't have during Practice sessions. Jenson had been fastest in Friday practice and seemed at ease at his 'second home Grand Prix'.

Nico Rosberg's car developed a hydraulics failure and he starts tomorrow's race in 23rd position. The general concensus in the paddock was that Hamilton had the pace for pole position but an 'misjudgement' error meant he didn't make it to the start/finish line in time to put in a lap-time which could have toppled Vettel off pole position. Button's qualifying time was 9/1000th off Vettel's pole lap time of 1min 30.466.

Top 3 Qualifiers (photo from

Top 10 drivers were: VET, BUT, HAM, MAS, ALO, WEB, KOB*, MSC, SEN, PET. 

*Kobayashi (the only remaining Japanese driver on the grid) was 'promoted' to 7th place even though he didn't set a time but because he had started a flying lap by the time the chequered flag fell.Click here for the rules on Qualifying rules for drivers who don't set a time.

Vettel just needs one point to win the 2011 World Drivers Championship but the McLaren drivers will try their utmost to delay the Red Bull celebrations as much as possible and to take the World Constructors Championship down to the wire.