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No surprises in Q1 at Spa

With as little as two minutes remaining in the opening phase of qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix, any number of Formula One's 'big names' could have been looking for excuses for missing the cut, but all somehow managed to make it through with last-ditch laps.

Despite Luca Badoer crashing out at Les Combes while the chequered flag was being prepared - missing the cut and most likely bringing the curtain down on his F1 career once and for all - both Fernando Alonso and Robert Kubica posted faster times to move out of the bottom five, while Mark Webber, Nico Rosberg and Kimi Raikkonen had already eased their own concerns, having flirted with the 'drop zone'

Alonso and Kubica, in making their escape, relegated the two Toro Rosso drivers, Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi, into the bottom quarter of the timesheets, negating otherwise promising performances from both, with Buemi having been among those to have topped the times during the 20-minute session.

Indeed, it seemed as though half the field had taken a turn in P1, with times tumbling throughout. In a moment of symmetry, Giancarlo Fisichella posted the first and final fastest times, giving Force India a welcome fillip at the same circuit where predecessor Jordan had claimed its first F1 victory.

Jarno Trulli, Rubens Barrichello, Adrian Sutil and Webber completed the top five - the Italian, Brazilian and German having also led the way at various points - while Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton just avoided the cut after dropping to 14th and 15th by session's end.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Giancarlo Fisichella [Pic credit: Force India]
Sahara Force India F1 VJM10 cockpit detail.
22.02.2017.
Sahara Force India F1 VJM10 rear wing and engine cover detail.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team with team mate Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Andrew Green (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Technical Director; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 with Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Andrew Green (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Technical Director; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team; Robert Fernley (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Deputy Team Principal, and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner with Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): David Croft (GBR) Sky Sports Commentator with Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver, with the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team, with the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 with team mate Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team unveil the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team unveil the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
22.02.2017.
Otmar Szafnauer (USA) Sahara Force India F1 Chief Operating Officer.
22.02.2017.
(L to R): Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team with Otmar Szafnauer (USA) Sahara Force India F1 Chief Operating Officer.
22.02.2017.
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
22.02.2017.
Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner.
22.02.2017.

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Calvin _

August 29, 2009 5:26 PM

Very strange season so far. All ups and downs. But what did we expect with so many fundamental changes to the cars. We're meant to have more overtaking and we get less. Teams have spent so much on the new cars that we're losing some teams. I wonder if the FIA foresaw any of this.



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