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Webber Continues Awesome Form with Yet Another F1 Pole in Turkey

Patrick AllenAnalyst IMay 29, 2010

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - MAY 29:  Mark Webber of Australia and Red Bull Racing drives during the final practice session prior to qualifying for the Turkish Formula One Grand Prix at Istanbul Park on May 29, 2010, in Istanbul, Turkey.  (Photo by Malcolm Griffiths/Getty Images)
Malcolm Griffiths/Getty Images

Another boring qualifying session I’m afraid. Sure we got a shock in the fact that Alonso didn’t make it through to the final shootout, but I think that was actually one of the only plusses we got. Whilst I’m frankly appalled as an Alonso fan that commentators seem to have totally turned their backs on him, I think Alonso will be the only man on the grid to give us a show tomorrow as he drives up through the pack.


Qualifying One

Yet again, the only question was who was going to join the three new teams in the knock out zone. That "honor" eventually fell to another man who I believe is getting a whole load of unnecessary stick, Liuzzi.

Glock led the pack out for the first session and set a time of 1:32:126. He was quickly pipped, though, by his former Toyota teammate Trulli.

Around four minutes in, most of the big boys took to the track but, to be honest, the top drivers could probably run around the track and still make it into Q2!

Ten minutes in and here were the standings:

Button, Rosberg, Hamilton, Alonso, Schumacher, Massa, Sutil, Petrov, de la Rossa, Hulkenburg, Buemi, Kobayashi, Barrichello, Alguersuari, Liuzzi, Trulli, Kovalainen, Senna, Glock, di Grassi, Vettel, Webber.

At this stage Red Bull still hadn’t left their garage. Sure enough, with about seven minutes left, the Bulls made an appearance and swiftly asserted themselves in P1 and P2!

Button did a good job to be the best of the rest and poor old Liuzzi did his unfairly shaky F1 career no favours by getting knocked out in round one.

Q1 Top Three:

Vettel

Webber

Button

Out:

Liuzzi, Trulli, Kovalainen, Glock, Senna, di Grassi, Chandhok


Qualifying Two

Kubica and Button were out very early and set a pretty good pace early on. In fact most of the top teams were out early for this session, but to be perfectly frank this added next to no action.

About half way through the positions were as follows:

Vettel, Hamilton, Webber, Button, Petrov, Kubica, Schumacher, Massa, Kobayashi, Sutil, Alonso, Rosberg, de la Rossa, Buemi, Alguersuari, Barrichello, Hulkenberg.

It was really strange—Alonso and Rosberg were both in trouble and this should have added some excitement, but the whole thing just felt flat. Rosberg eventually put in a safe P4 time, but Alonso simply wasn’t fast enough and a mistake at a crucial moment cost the Spaniard and his team.

What followed, pretty much drove me mental! It’s funny isn’t it that in the space of five or so races Alonso can go from being "the best overall driver package" to, in the words of Martin Brundel, a "miserable little so and so."

Of course he’s miserable! He has to put up with a hard patch he is going through on top of ridiculous comments from the fickle media! Miserable Mr Brundel? Of course he is! How many questions did you ask him in Spanish? Did you take into account any problems he might be having personally? No!

Alonso is having a hard time at the moment, but he is one of the few drivers on the grid who regularly lets you put a microphone in his face when he is trying to prepare for the race (something that Hamilton doesn’t let you do). Leave the guy alone!

Small rant over (sorry about that), here are those Q2 results:

Q2 Top Three:

Vettel

Webber

Hamilton

Out

Sutil, Fernando "the miserable sod" Alonso, de la Rossa, Buemi, Barrichello, Alguersuari, Hulkenberg


Qualifying Three

Kubica was out early again, but by this stage I really wasn’t expecting much. The question was, yet again, which Red Bull driver would get pole.

Hamilton did his best to spice the session up by driving extremely well, but he simply didn’t have the machine to do it. The 2008 World Champion did manage to split the Red Bulls though which may give a little bit of excitement into turn one.

After all of the drivers had set their times the positions were as follows:

Webber, Hamilton, Vettel, Button, Schumacher, Rosberg, Kubica, Massa, Petrov, Kobayashi

Despite a last minute challenge from Hamilton, that is pretty much how it finished. Yet again, Red Bull dominate qualifying. Don’t get me wrong, they sure deserve it, and honestly, seeing Webber crowned World Champion would certainly bring a huge smile to my face (I know, I know, too early, but hey).

However, Red Bull’s dominance, and the pretty clear split found between the teams is making qualifying one of the most predictable and boring events in motor sport. Think about it, with no significant events, we always know who the bottom six cars will be. Similarly, we can be pretty sure who the top eight will be (granted Alonso messed that one up a bit today).

What we are left with is an annoyingly un-entertaining competition to see which unlucky driver will lose out in Q1 and which lucky two drivers will join the big boys in Q3.

As for the race? Well, I personally believe that will depend on how well Alonso does.

Final standings:

1 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 1:26.295

2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.433

3 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 1:26.760

4 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.781

5 Michael Schumacher Mercedes GP 1:26.857

6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes GP 1:26.952

7 Robert Kubica Renault 1:27.039

8 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:27.082

9 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1:27.430

10 Kamui Kobayashi BMW Sauber-Ferrari 1:28.122

11 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:27.525

12 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:27.612

13 Pedro de la Rosa BMW Sauber-Ferrari 1:27.879

14 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 1:28.273

15 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:28.392

16 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 1:28.540

17 Nico Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1:28.841

18 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1:28.958

19 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1:30.237

20 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1:30.519

21 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:30.744

22 Bruno Senna HRT-Cosworth 1:31.266

23 Lucas di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1:31.989

24 Karun Chandhok HRT-Cosworth 1:32.060

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