McLaren expected to go well with Lewis claiming he was ready to take the fight to Red Bull, but ahead of today’s qualifying session and following the practice sessions it didn’t look good for the Woking team.  As qualifying played out, McLaren really did not have anything to take the fight to the Red Bulls, but Ferrari really have been working hard and were very close indeed to putting Vettel’s domination on hold…  here’s how it happened:

Qualifying Round 1

24 cars out on the track, thankfully crash-free, following a chaotic few practice sessions and the usual suspects have taken up the final 7 places on the grid for Sunday.  Jaime Alguersuari was the first casualty as his season with Toro Rosso fails to improve with yet another exit in round 1.

Knocked out in Round 1:

  • 18th – Jaime Alguersuari
  • 19th – Jarno Trulli
  • 20th – Heikki Kovalainen
  • 21st – Tonio Liuzzi
  • 22nd – Timo Glock
  • 23rd – Narain Karthikeyan
  • 24th – Jerome d’Ambrosio (outside 107% rule)

Qualifying Round 2

Kamui kept everyone smiling as he tried everything to get into the final round of qualifying and oh so nearly met the wall of champions with a terrific slide out of the final chicane.  Paul Di Resta was also putting everything into his lap and only just missed out on getting his Force India into the top 10 – he managed to beat Sutil once again though.  Maldonado continued to do well with a convincing 12th, while Buemi proved that the Toro Rosso is fast enough to be comfortably in the midfield.

Knocked out in Round 2

  • 11th – Paul Di Resta
  • 12th – Pastor Maldonado
  • 13th – Kamui Kobayashi
  • 14th – Adrian Sutil
  • 15th – Sebastien Buemi
  • 16th – Rubens Barrichello
  • 17th – Pedro De La Rosa

Qualifying Round 3 – Pole Position Shoot Out

Sebastian Vettel did the business again, with a lap of 1.13.014 – so nearly a 1.12.  It’s no surprise, in fact we’re getting a little tired of Vettel being on pole, but it was great to see Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa giving Ferrari a much needed lift with 2nd and 3rd on the grid.  The biggest losers were McLaren – oh so confident ahead of the qualifying, but it hasn’t worked out at all for them with Lewis in 5th and Jenson Button down in 7th.

  • 1st – Sebastian Vettel
  • 2nd – Fernando Alonso
  • 3rd – Felipe Massa
  • 4th – Mark Webber
  • 5th – Lewis Hamilton
  • 6th – Nico Rosberg
  • 7th – Jenson Button
  • 8th – Michael Schumacher
  • 9th – Nick Heidfeld
  • 10th – Vitaly Petrov