Schumacher Leads All-Ferrari Front Row - Spain

World Champion Michael Schumacher claimed his third pole position in five races when he eased his new Ferrari to a comfortable top spot in Saturday's final qualifying session for the Spanish Grand Prix.

Schumacher Leads All-Ferrari Front Row - Spain

World Champion Michael Schumacher claimed his third pole position in five races when he eased his new Ferrari to a comfortable top spot in Saturday's final qualifying session for the Spanish Grand Prix.

Schumacher, who will give the new F2003-GA machine its race debut in Barcelona on Sunday, was the last man out after topping the times on Friday and he never looked like being beaten.

His record at the Spanish track - four wins and never a finish outside the points - looks set to be continued after he claimed his fourth consecutive pole position at the track.

Schumacher's teammate Rubens Barrichello ensured the new machine secured a front-row lock-out in its first qualifying session when he set a time of 1:18.020 to leave the scarlet Scuderia cheering again. But the performance of the Ferrari pair wiped the smile of local boy Fernando Alonso, and the thousands of fans around the Circuit de Catalunya, as they both knocked him off provisional pole and down to third.

His Italian Renault teammate Jarno Trulli will start alongside Alonso on the second row after qualifying fourth, with Briton Jenson Button fifth for BAR Honda on a time of 1:18.704 seconds.

Frenchman Olivier Panis, of Toyota, finished sixth with German Ralf Schumacher seventh for Williams-BMW, Scot David Coulthard eighth for McLaren-Mercedes, Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya ninth in the second Williams and German Heinz-Harald Frentzen completed the top ten in the Sauber.

Briton Justin Wilson, who qualified last on Friday, was the first man out on track and he set a benchmark time of 1:22.104 seconds which his Minardi teammate Jos Verstappen failed to beat.

Ralf Firman, out third, claimed the top spot comfortably for Jordan but he was soon beaten by the next driver on track, Nick Heidfeld, of Sauber, who was then in turn beaten by his teammate Frentzen.

Italian Giancarlo Fisichella was out next after his Jordan team fixed two engine failures in the minutes before his one-lap qualifying effort and he only managed a time of 1:20.976, which dropped him behind Firman for the first time.

Montoya, who crashed out of the morning practice session, continued to struggle and although he rose to the top of the times he was only five hundredths of a second ahead of previous leader Frentzen. Under-fire Antonio Pizzonia finished almost a second slower than Montoya with a performance that failed to inspire his Jaguar team's confidence ahead of what could be a crucial race for him this weekend.

Canadian Jacques Villeneuve, another man under pressure from his on-song teammate Jenson Button, was five tenths of a second off Montoya's time but Williams driver Schumacher shot to the top when he went out next. The crowd erupted as Alonso drove out the pits and he gave them even more reason to cheer at the end of his lap after he tore seven tenths of a second off Schumacher's fastest time to go top.

Coulthard was the next man out and he finished eight tenths of a second slower than Alonso but that still put him third behind Schumacher's Williams-BMW â€" but his teammate Kimi Raikkonen suffered even worse fate.

World Championship leader Raikkonen lost control of his car and ran over the gravel trap after the first sector and decided to pull into the pits without setting a time to give his team the chance to work on his car overnight.

Australian Mark Webber failed to live up to his qualifying expectations â€" which have seen him start from third and fifth on the grid in the last two races â€" but he still beat Pizzonia by seven tenths of a second to slot in behind Villeneuve.

Panis set an impressive time to claim second, half a second behind Alonso, and Button, on track next, then bumped him down and finished just less than a second faster than teammate Villeneuve. Brazilian Cristiano da Matta failed to come up to the level of his teammate with a time that was almost one and a half seconds slower than pole with only the two Ferraris and Trulli's Renault left to run.

Pos Driver Team T1 T2 Time 1. (20) M.Schumacher Ferrari (B) 22.486 53.469 1:17.762 2. (18) Barrichello Ferrari (B) 22.455 53.604 1:18.020 + 0.258 3. (11) Alonso Renault (M) 22.788 53.855 1:18.233 + 0.471 4. (19) Trulli Renault (M) 22.956 54.264 1:18.615 + 0.853 5. (16) Button BAR Honda (B) 22.818 54.084 1:18.704 + 0.942 6. (15) Panis Toyota (M) 22.888 53.996 1:18.811 + 1.049 7. (10) R.Schumacher Williams BMW (M) 23.097 54.428 1:19.006 + 1.244 8. (12) Coulthard McLaren Mercedes (M) 23.154 54.483 1:19.128 + 1.366 9. (7) Montoya Williams BMW (M) 23.157 54.680 1:19.377 + 1.615 10. (5) Frentzen Sauber Petronas (B) 23.107 54.710 1:19.427 + 1.665 11. (9) Villeneuve BAR Honda (B) 23.299 54.822 1:19.563 + 1.801 12. (14) Webber Jaguar Cosworth (M) 23.324 54.860 1:19.615 + 1.853 13. (17) da Matta Toyota (M) 22.981 54.542 1:19.623 + 1.861 14. (4) Heidfeld Sauber Petronas (B) 23.127 54.927 1:19.646 + 1.884 15. (3) Firman Jordan Ford (B) 23.395 55.119 1:20.215 + 2.453 16. (8) Pizzonia Jaguar Cosworth (M) 23.414 55.317 1:20.308 + 2.546 17. (6) Fisichella Jordan Ford (B) 23.708 55.838 1:20.976 + 3.214 18. (1) Wilson Minardi Cosworth (B) 23.878 56.559 1:22.104 + 4.342 19. (2) Verstappen Minardi Cosworth (B) 23.968 56.727 1:22.237 + 4.475 20. (13) Raikkonen McLaren Mercedes (M) 22.986 58.000 No Time Pos ----- Sector 1 ----- ----- Sector 2 ----- ----- Sector 3 ----- 1. Barrichello 22.455 M.Schumacher 30.983 M.Schumacher 24.293 2. M.Schumacher 22.486 Alonso 31.067 Trulli 24.351 3. Alonso 22.788 Panis 31.108 Alonso 24.378 4. Button 22.818 Barrichello 31.149 Barrichello 24.416 5. Panis 22.888 Button 31.266 R.Schumacher 24.578 6. Trulli 22.956 Trulli 31.308 Button 24.620 7. da Matta 22.981 Coulthard 31.329 Coulthard 24.645 8. Raikkonen 22.986 R.Schumacher 31.331 Montoya 24.697 9. R.Schumacher 23.097 Montoya 31.523 Frentzen 24.717 10. Frentzen 23.107 Villeneuve 31.523 Heidfeld 24.719 11. Heidfeld 23.127 Webber 31.536 Villeneuve 24.741 12. Coulthard 23.154 da Matta 31.561 Webber 24.755 13. Montoya 23.157 Frentzen 31.603 Panis 24.815 14. Villeneuve 23.299 Firman 31.724 Pizzonia 24.991 15. Webber 23.324 Heidfeld 31.800 da Matta 25.081 16. Firman 23.395 Pizzonia 31.903 Firman 25.096 17. Pizzonia 23.414 Fisichella 32.130 Fisichella 25.138 18. Fisichella 23.708 Wilson 32.681 Verstappen 25.510 19. Wilson 23.878 Verstappen 32.759 Wilson 25.545 20. Verstappen 23.968 Raikkonen 35.014 Top Speed: 325.4 (Barrichello, Ferrari) All timing unofficial

shares
comments
Grapevine: More News from the Paddock - Spanish GP
Previous article

Grapevine: More News from the Paddock - Spanish GP

Next article

Frentzen Happy with Top Ten Position

Frentzen Happy with Top Ten Position
Load comments
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated Plus

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated

Humble yet blisteringly quick, Charles Leclerc is the driver Ferrari sees as its next
 world champion, and a rightful heir to the greats of Ferrari’s past – even though, by the team’s own admission, he’s not the finished article yet. Here's why it is confident that the 24-year-old can be the man to end a drought stretching back to 2008

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2021
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2021
How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits Plus

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells STUART CODLING about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Plus

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at
 Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as BEN ANDERSON discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren  Plus

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren 

From being lapped by his own team-mate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Plus

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing windtunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher Plus

The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles at a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021