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GP Week : Issue 210
QUALIFYING formula 1 round 14 singapore gp – Qualifying POS # DRIvER TEAM Q1 Q2 Q3 LAPS 1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:46.921 1:46.287 1:45.681 17 2 6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:47.244 1:45.825 1:45.688 19 3 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:47.488 1:46.493 1:45.854 12 4 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1:47.476 1:46.586 1:45.902 15 5 14 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:46.889 1:46.328 1:45.907 16 6 19 Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1:47.615 1:46.472 1:46.000 20 7 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1:46.685 1:46.359 1:46.170 14 8 77 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1:47.196 1:46.622 1:46.187 18 9 20 Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1:47.976 1:46.700 1:46.250 18 10 26 Daniil Kvyat STR-Renault 1:47.656 1:46.926 1:47.362 21 11 22 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:47.161 1:46.943 12 12 25 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Renault 1:47.407 1:46.989 14 13 27 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:47.370 1:47.308 13 14 21 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1:47.970 1:47.333 9 15 11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1:48.143 1:47.575 13 16 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:47.862 1:47.812 14 17 99 Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1:48.324 6 18 13 Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1:49.063 8 19 17 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1:49.440 7 20 10 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1:50.405 8 21 4 Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1:50.473 7 22 9 Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1:52.287 5 After the first runs in Q3 the potential grid for the singapore Grand Prix looked a little strange – Felipe Massa had the best time, followed by Ricciardo, Alonso, Raikkonen, Bottas, Hamilton, Rosberg and Vettel. Really? Really. What was going on? A good question. Lewis would later say that it’s just a matter of getting it together, saving your best for last, and so on, but in the dying few minutes of F1 qualifying, what was happening here wasn’t the norm. All it would take was a spin, a red flag, and that could easily have been the grid. Undoubtedly these were ‘used set’ runs, with one final set of SuperSofts left for everyone (only just – such was the gap, over two seconds, between Prime Softs and Option SuperSofts here that everyone had gone with the options as early as Q1). In the end, the cream rose to the top – just. Both Hamilton and Rosberg made mistakes, Lewis at Turn 1, Nico at the last corner, but Lewis’ was seven-thousandths of a second less damaging. “Damn it!” exclaimed a frustrated German on the radio, which pretty well summed it up, although the way qualifying had gone, he had expected to be further back: “I had to change my brakes for qualifying and then had to find the right balance in the early runs which was a struggle. I just thought, ’that's it, you will be sixth or seventh.’ “Then, at the end, I was really happy with the balance and feeling good. When I heard that Lewis was that tiny margin quicker I thought ‘damn!’ I directly reviewed my lap and thought there were so many places to gain seven thousandths of a second - especially in the last corner ... “Last year I overtook Sebastian at Turn One, so it's definitely possible to win from here ...” The obvious outcome from this Q session was that the gap to the rest was smaller, much smaller, than it has been – it is, of course, a unique circuit. The Red Bulls took out the second row, with Daniel happy, Sebastian less so: “For such a long lap, it's amazing how close we are. Monaco is a street circuit but it's a lot shorter lap so you can expect us to be closer, but this one, yeah, it's pretty cool how many cars are within half a second or a second. So, it's going to be a fun race tomorrow definitely. I think tyres will be key, as always, but particularly here. It's not going to be as straightfor ward as Monza, with a one-stop.” Just half a tenth shy of his Leaving it late, very late ... ABOVe: Kerbing it – Lewis lost a couple of tenths at Turn 1. 27 GPWEEK.com // 27 GPWEEK.com // F1 >>> SINGAPORE PARTNERS: