Vettel heads all-Red Bull front row

Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber secured Red Bull its second successive front row and its eighth of the season during qualifying for the inaugural Korean Grand Prix on Saturday

Vettel heads all-Red Bull front row

Vettel's ninth pole position of the season came in dramatic fashion as the resurgent German stole the top spot from Ferrari's Fernando Alonso after the chequered flag had fallen.

Alonso looked for all the world as if he had taken pole with a 1m35.766s lap, but that was before Vettel calmly delivered a second attempt on his option tyres and produced a stunning 1m35.585 as the RB6 once again demonstrated its one-lap prowess.

To make things worse for a crestfallen Alonso, Webber also produced a second lap on his options to improve from a poor first attempt to lock out the front row. The world championship leader will doubtless be concerned however that he must start on the dirty side of the track.

Lewis Hamilton ended up fourth fastest, and was disappointed with that having set the pace in Q3 and shown pace throughout qualifying. He was however lucky not to be looking at a major rebuild after he narrowly missed writing off the car when he lost the car on the pit entry - just missing the barrier as trundled over the grass at high-speed.

Nico Rosberg was fifth ahead of a subdued Felipe Massa in the second Ferrari.

Jenson Button struggled for tyre temperature through all three sessions and ended up a distant seventh ahead of Robert Kubica's Renault, Michael Schumacher's Mercedes and the Williams of Rubens Barrichello.

Fears that the dusty track and traffic issues might make Q2 something of a lottery proved unfounded as a list of the usual suspects got dropped out of the top ten shootout.

In the end Nico Hulkenberg was closest, only a tenth off breaking into Q3, but lost out eventually to his Williams team-mate.

Kamui Kobayashi outqualified his Sauber team-mate Nick Heidfeld to go 12th, while Adrian Sutil was 14th quickest. Vitaly Petrov lapped 15th fastest, despite a half-spin after he turned in with two wheels on a kerb.

The Toro Rossos of Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi were slowest in the session.

Vitantonio Liuzzi failed to make it out of Q1 thanks to a late improvement by his Force India team-mate Adrian Sutil. The Italian did have a final chance to improve as the chequered flag came out but failed to capitalise, having found himself surprised by the graining on the option tyre. Some good news for Liuzzi was that Petrov's five-place grid drop meant that he moved up to 17th

Jarno Trulli won the battle of the new teams for Lotus and starts 18th ahead of Virgin's Timo Glock, who spun in early on in Q1. Behind Petrov who is 20th on the grid, Heikki Kovalainen was more than second slower than his Lotus team-mate to qualify 21st with Lucas di Grassi alongside him.

Sakon Yamamoto outqualified his Hispania team-mate Bruno Senna for the first time this year.

 Pos Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3 1. Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:37.123 1:36.074 1:35.585 2. Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:37.373 1:36.039 1:35.659 3. Alonso Ferrari 1:37.144 1:36.287 1:35.766 4. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:37.113 1:36.197 1:36.062 5. Rosberg Mercedes 1:37.708 1:36.791 1:36.535 6. Massa Ferrari 1:37.515 1:36.169 1:36.571 7. Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:38.123 1:37.064 1:36.731 8. Kubica Renault 1:37.703 1:37.179 1:36.824 9. Schumacher Mercedes 1:37.980 1:37.077 1:36.950 10. Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1:38.257 1:37.511 1:36.998 11. Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 1:38.115 1:37.620 12. Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:38.429 1:37.643 13. Heidfeld Sauber-Ferrari 1:38.171 1:37.715 14. Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:38.572 1:37.783 15. Petrov Renault 1:38.174 1:37.799 * 16. Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:38.583 1:37.853 17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:38.621 1:38.594 18. Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 1:38.955 19. Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 1:40.521 20. Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1:40.748 21. Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 1:41.768 22. di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 1:42.325 23. Yamamoto HRT-Cosworth 1:42.444 24. Senna HRT-Cosworth 1:43.283 * Drops five places for Japan penalty All Timing Unofficial 
shares
comments
Kubica hopes to fight for podium place
Previous article

Kubica hopes to fight for podium place

Next article

Korea Saturday quotes: Lotus

Korea Saturday quotes: Lotus
Load comments
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…

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
Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay Plus

Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax Plus

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021