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GP Week : Issue 187
The Hungarian Grand Prix weekend continued under sunny skies with scorching temperatures on saturday morning. A largely incident-free final practice session saw Romain Grosjean top for Lotus, ending Red Bull’s run of FP domination. The Frenchman led Fernando Alonso and Sergio Perez; the latter driver crashed in the closing minutes, bringing out the yellows and preventing his opponents from improving their times. Thanks to engine problems, Esteban Gutierrez missed out on anything more than installation laps. With track temperatures exceeding 50̊C for Sunday’s race, tyre preser vation was the name of the game. To that end, the big guns all elected to keep their drivers in the garage for as long as possible during Q1, saving rubber for the later shoot-outs and the race. Alonso’s first effort saw the Spaniard shoot straight to the top of the timesheets with a 1m20.652s lap, before Grosjean unseated him with a 1m20.447s effort, three-tenths faster than teammate Kimi Raikkonen. Sebastian Vettel’s first lap saw the defending champion two-tenths shy of Grosjean. Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton went straight to the top of the timesheets, with the German racer leading his teammate by 0.011s. In the dropout zone in the final minute were the driver pairings from Caterham and Marussia plus Gutierrez and Paul di Resta. Hovering on the edge was Perez. As Q2 got under way, the track temperature had climbed to 50̊C. The Lotus drivers set the early pace, with Grosjean unseating his teammate, before Hamilton hit the top with a 1m20.303s lap. The Briton’s glory was short-lived, with Vettel crossing the line in 1m19.992s. On the other side of the garage, Webber’s efforts were hampered by KERS failure, and the Australian was in the dropout zone before the session was half-run. Joining him were the driver pairings from Toro Rosso and Williams, and Nico Hulkenberg. In the final minute Rosberg and Hamilton bested Vettel, while the Williams pairing saved themselves, knocking the McLarens into the dropout zone, before being dropped back in during the final rush. When push came to shove, the losers were Adrian Sutil, Hulkenberg, Jenson Button, Jean-Eric Vergne, Pastor Maldonado, and Bottas. Q3 saw the Mercedes and Lotus driver pairings very closely matched, with Hamilton and Rosberg split by 0.063s, and Grosjean and Raikkonen split by 0.038s. Hamilton claimed provisional pole, but Vettel’s first lap saw him cross the line eight-tenths faster than the Briton, who dived back into the pits for fresh rubber. The final minute saw a chaos of times, the standings changing with each man to cross the line. When all was said and done it was a very surprised Hamilton who led Vettel, the Briton asking ‘is that pole?’ when congratulated by his team. On the following pages, Trent Price takes a closer look at the incidents that shaped the 2013 Hungarian Grand Prix, from Webber’s recovery to Grosjean’s disappointment and beyond... QUALIFYING 1. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 1m19.388s 2. Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) 1m19426s 3. Romain Grosjean (Lotus) 1m19.595s 4. Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) 1m19.720s 5. Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) 1m19.791s 6. Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus) 1m19.851s 7. Felipe Massa (Ferrari) 1m19.929s 8. Daniel Ricciardo (Toro Rosso) 1m20.641s 9. Sergio Perez (McLaren) 1m22.398s 10. Mark Webber (Red Bull) NO TIME SET 11. Adrian Sutil (Force India) 1m20.569s 12. Nico Hulkenberg (Sauber) 1m20.580s 13. Jenson Button (McLaren) 1m20.777s 14. Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso) 1m21.029 15. Pastor Maldonado (Williams) 1m21.133s 16. Valtteri Bottas (Williams) 1m21.219s9 17. Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber) 1m21.724s 18. Paul di Resta (Force India) 1m22.043s 19. Charles Pic (Caterham) 1m23.007s 20. Giedo vd Garde (Caterham) 1m23.333s 21. Jules Bianchi (Marussia) 1m23.787s 22. Max Chilton (Marussia) 1m23.997s LEWIS HOT, MW NOT THE GRID "It's stupid, it's embarrassing and it's a brutal circuit to be out of position ..." – Technical problems for Webber ... again. 33 GPWEEK.com // 33 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: F1 >>> HUNGARY