Japanese Grand Prix Qualifying Report: The Red Bull are on song!




Japanese Grand Prix Qualifying Report: The Red Bull are on song!

Japanese Grand Prix Qualifying Report: The Red Bull are on song!

The qualifying session at Japanese Grand Prix  was reminiscent of the 2011 season. Red Bull had the front grid locked for a 1-2 start with a dominant performance by both Sebastien Vettel and Mark Webber, while Jenson Button qualified third but will start the race from eighth following a 5-place gearbox penalty.

It was a bad day at the office for Lewis Hamilton who qualified a measly ninth after a setup problem had him fighting massive understeer at every corner.

Alonso continued his struggle with the Ferrari which was nowhere near the top qualifiers and qualified 6th while his teammate Massa, who had looked good in all practice sessions, failed to reach Q3 but will start the race from tenth.

It was a good day for Sauber though as both the drivers qualified in the Top 5 with Kamui Kobayashi third and Sergio Perez fifth on the grid. Romain Grosjean too came up with a flyer of a lap and will line up on the grid in fourth position while his teammate, a title contender, will start from 7th, behind Alonso.

The final grid as it stands is as follows:

1

Vettel

Red Bull

1’30.839

2

Webber

Red Bull

1’31.090

3

Kobayashi

Sauber

1’31.700

4

Grosjean

Lotus

1’31.898

5

Perez

Sauber

1’32.022

6

Alonso

Ferrari

1’32.114

7

Räikkönen

Lotus

1’32.208

8

Button

McLaren

1’31.290

9

Hamilton

McLaren

1’32.327

10

Massa

Ferrari

1’32.293

11

di Resta

Force India

1’32.327

12

Maldonado

Williams

1’32.512

13

Rosberg

Mercedes

1’32.625

14

Ricciardo

Toro Rosso

1’32.954

15

Hülkenberg

Force India

16

Vergne

Toro Rosso

1’33.368

17

Senna

Williams

1’33.405

18

Kovalainen

Caterham

1’34.657

19

Glock

Marussia

1’35.213

20

de la Rosa

HRT

1’35.385

21

Pic

Marussia

1’35.429

22

Petrov

Caterham

1’35.432

23

Schumacher

Mercedes

1’32.469

24

Karthikeyan

HRT

1’36.734

The qualifying session began Q1 ended with the usual suspects HRT, Marussia, Caterham failing to make the cut for Q2. Karthikeyan was outpaced by Pedro de la Rosa after being faster than him in the last two races, while Glock beat Pic and Kovaleinen beat Petrov. The story at the back of the grid is pretty boring.

However there were some moments of excitement in Q3 when Bruno Senna was rudely interrupted on his fast lap by the slow Toro Rosso of Jean Eric Vergne while Schumacher barely got through Q3 as in the final moments he scraped a lap that just got him in at 16th. It was never going to be a pleasant weekend for Michael Schumacher as he had to serve a 10 place grid peanlty after banging into the back of Jean Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso in Singapore but being off the pace and then starting 23rd on the grid is not a very auspicious beginning. It will be a hard race for Schumi tomorrow! Rosberg was slower than his teammate but will start 13th thanks to other drivers penalties.

Q2 was normal affair, the Toro Rosso boys were fighting among themselves, Massa Maldonando, Di Resta were all eliminated. Nico Hulkenberg out qualified his team mate but will serve a 5 place grid penalty to start 15th. Both of these drivers are on Ferrari’s radar and will be gunning to get the best result that they can.

Q3 turned out to be more exciting though as Raikkonen spun at the the spoon corner after he ran wide and then beached himself on the gravel. He ruined the fastest laps for most of the drivers in the end and allowed Kamui Kobayashi to qualify fourth and start in fourth tomorrow. The pressure now is on Kobayashi to give a strong result to the team by at least scoring the podium and convincing the team of his potential. It has been a hrad season for Kobayashi as Perez has had three podium finishes while Kobayashi’s strongest finish has been a fourth position.

The race is definitely going to be exciting. Each driver has a point to prove and the first corner of Suzuka is a tricky one as always! Get ready for some enthralling action on Race day tomorrow! A full race report after the race will follow in case you miss out on the spectacular event.

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