Hamilton Denies Vettel A Home Pole Position

Lewis Hamilton has denied Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel a home pole position by putting in a last gasp lap to take pole position for the second weekend in a row. Mark Webber, tipped as the possible pole man, lost time behind Fernando Alonso and finished third while Nico Rosberg dropped out of Q2 due to a rapidly improving track. 

Paul di Resta was the first man to venture onto the Nurburgring  during Q1 and was naturally the first man to start a timed lap. However, the Scot failed to warm his tires adequately and ditched his first attempt while Maldonado set the first timed lap – a 1.31.8. Sutil came around the Ring but was almost a second shy of Maldonado’s time. Jules Bianchi, who fell ill on Friday and had to pull out of FP2, set a first lap of 1.33.5 to set himself ahead of the other backmarkers.

Ricciardo was the next man to set a time and went first while Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton tried, but failed, to beat the Aussie’s lap. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, on the option tyre, to finally beat the Toro Rosso while Felipe Massa swooped in at the last-minute to take top honours in Q1. Meanwhile, Sergio Perez had to battle hard to clear his McLaren from the drop-zone while Red Bull’s Mark Webber went wide on his timed lap and only scraped it into the next round of Qualifying.

Jean-Eric Vergne and Paul di Resta were straight on track when Q2 started. Vergne set a 1.31.2 which was bettered by Di Resta – but on;y just as the Scot went 0.027 faster than the Frenchman. Esteban Gutierrez came across the line to take third while Raikkonen set his first lap and went seven-tenths clear of Di Resta. Nico Rosberg binned his first timed lap when he locked up his Pirellis and went straight on at turn 1 while Hamilton got a lap together and went four-tenths ahead in the lead.

Alonso couldn’t beat Hamilton’s time – nor could Grosjean or Rosberg. In fact, Perez, Button, Massa Gutierrez and Ricciardo had all crossed the line before Sebastian Vettel finally beat Hamilton. Vettel’s team-mate, Mark Webber, slipped and slid his way through T2 and T3 to take 3rd. The track suddenly lit up and Lotus’ Romain Grosjean put in a stunning lap to go second while Fernando Alonso also produced a surprise to go first. Sergio Perez also put in a good lap to go eighth while Massa set a new top time. Vergne was the next man to improve and made it into the top ten by 0.001 – until Ricciardo moved into sixth and bumped his team-mate down. Jenson Button moved into ninth while Nico Rosberg was knocked into the drop out zone – a devastating blow for last weekend’s race winner.

With the track coming to life right at the end of Q2, it opened up the possibilities as now Ferrari and Lotus looked to have a claim at pole aswell as Red Bull and Hamilton. Kimi Raikkonen was the first across the line and went straight into the 1.29s made it faster than 2011’s pole lap. Sebastian Vettel bettered Kimi while Hamilton bettered Vettel again. Mark Webber put in a disappointing lap to go fourth while Grosjean went fifth. Jenson Button and both Ferrari’s abandoned their laps  and pitted for a fresh pair of boots to ready themselves for one final charge at pole position.

Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa came out on the harder compound tires and set a 1.39 and 1.41 respectively – ruling themselves out of a good position on the grid. Sebastian Vettel crossed the line for the final time and took provisional pole by .03 while team-mate Mark Webber went third and Lewis Hamilton came across the line to rob Vettel of a home pole position.

  1. Lewis Hamilton
  2. Sebastian Vettel
  3. Mark Webber
  4. Kimi Raikkonen
  5. Romain Grosjean
  6. Daniel Ricciardo
  7. Felipe Massa
  8. Fernando Alonso
  9.  Jenson Button
  10. Nico Hulkenberg
  11. Nico Rosberg
  12. Paul di Resta
  13. Sergio Perez
  14. Esteban Gutierrez
  15. Adrian Sutil
  16. Jean-Eric Vergne
  17. Valtteri Bottas
  18. Pastor Maldonado
  19. Charles Pic
  20. Jules Bianchi
  21. Giedo van der Garde
  22. Max Chilton

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