Alonso grabs pole in disrupted qualifying for the British Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso claimed his and Ferrari's first pole position since the 2010 Singapore Grand Prix as he came out on top of a tight battle with Red Bull's Mark Webber in a drying and delayed British GP qualifying session at Silverstone

Alonso grabs pole in disrupted qualifying for the British Grand Prix

The session was interrupted for over an hour and a half when the level of standing water became impossible to handle. By the time it resumed, conditions were much improved, and although full wets were still the best choice for the remaining six minutes of Q2, intermediates were the way to go in the pole shoot-out.

Webber looked to be in good shape as he put himself 0.8 seconds clear of the pack with a 1m51.793s in the closing minutes, only for Alonso to pip it by 0.047s. Webber's reply was not quite quick enough and he had to be content with the outside of the front row.

Germany's two Formula 1 world champions will share row two. Michael Schumacher produced one of his best qualifying efforts for Mercedes as he secured third ahead of the second Red Bull of Sebastian Vettel.

Ferrari got both its cars in the top five, as Felipe Massa qualified fifth.

Kimi Raikkonen's Lotus starts alongside the Brazilian, with Catalunya winner Pastor Maldonado next up for Williams.

The leading British driver was only eighth, Lewis Hamilton qualifying his McLaren on row four. Nico Hulkenberg was ninth quickest but will lose five places due to a gearbox change on his Force India.

Romain Grosjean qualified for Q3 only to the spin into the gravel at Vale at the end of Q2. With his Lotus beached, he had to sit out Q3 and settle for 10th.

Inevitably there were some midfield upsets in the rain. Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) was third at the red flag but tumbled to 13th after the restart while Sauber's Sergio Perez dropped further still. Fastest before the stoppage, his choice of intermediates proved too ambitious and he tumbled to 17th.

The headline story from Q1 was yet another Silverstone disappointment for Jenson Button. The McLaren driver could do no better than 18th, his final lap hamstrung by more rain arriving in the final sector plus yellow flags for Timo Glock's spun Marussia on the exit of Club.

Hamilton was the only home driver in the top 10, Paul di Resta (Force India) being edged out of a Q3 place by Alonso in the closing moments, leaving the Scot 11th.

Pos  Driver                Team                 Time          Gap   
 1.  Fernando Alonso       Ferrari              1m51.746s   
2. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m51.793s + 0.047
3. Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1m52.020s + 0.274
4. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m52.199s + 0.453
5. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m53.065s + 1.319
6. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1m53.290s + 1.544
7. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1m53.539s + 1.793
8. Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1m53.543s + 1.797
9. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m54.382s + 2.636
10. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault no time Q2 cut-off time: 1m56.931s Gap ** 11. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m57.009s + 2.112 12. Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1m57.071s + 2.174 13. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m57.108s + 2.211 14. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m57.132s + 2.235 15. Bruno Senna Williams-Renault 1m57.426s + 2.529 16. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m57.719s + 2.822 17. Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1m57.895s + 2.998 Q1 cut-off time: 1m47.105s Gap * 18. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m48.044s + 1.765 19. Vitaly Petrov Caterham-Renault 1m49.027s + 2.748 20. Heikki Kovalainen Caterham-Renault 1m49.477s + 3.198 21. Timo Glock Marussia-Cosworth 1m51.618s + 5.339 22. Pedro de la Rosa HRT-Cosworth 1m52.742s + 6.463 23. Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1m53.040s + 6.761 24. Charles Pic Marussia-Cosworth 1m54.143s + 7.864 107% time: 1m53.718s
* Gap to quickest in Q1
** Gap to quickest in Q2
shares
comments
Britain Saturday quotes: HRT
Previous article

Britain Saturday quotes: HRT

Next article

Sebastian Vettel fears rain will make British Grand Prix 'a lottery'

Sebastian Vettel fears rain will make British Grand Prix 'a lottery'
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Plus

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star Plus

The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s team-mate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy Plus

How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Plus

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Plus

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Plus

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022