Sebastian Vettel claimed his eleventh pole of the F1 2011 season and maintained Red Bull's unbeaten run by claiming top spot in qualifying for the Singapore Grand Prix
today - despite having to abort his second flying run.
The German's first effort was good enough to claim P1 after the top five runners had completed their initial flying laps, and none of his rivals proved sufficiently fast to dislodge him, despite several improvements.
Mark Webber improved the most on his second run, leaping into P2 to confirm another all-RBR front row, although his lap was still 0.351 seconds off the sister car (a 1m 44.381s versus a 1m 44.732s).
Jenson Button meanwhile also gained and moved up to third spot at the expense of his McLaren
team-mate Lewis Hamilton
– although just 0.005 seconds split the two. Initially it was thought Hamilton only did one run after suffering a puncture in Q2. However he later revealed that a refuelling issue was the real reason he didn't go out again.
Fernando Alonso improved on his second tour, but it wasn't enough to lift him up from fifth. His best a 1m 44.874s was just 0.065 seconds off P4 – a real indication of just how tight it was.
Felipe Massa kept the two-by-two formation going and was sixth in the second Ferrari, albeit almost a second slower. Massa had had to abort his first run after seeing his concentration thrown by Hamilton attempting to muscle through on the warm-up lap. The Brazilian did enough on his remaining run, however, to see off the challenge of Mercedes' Nico Rosberg.
Rosberg will line up alongside his team-mate Michael Schumacher on row four as neither Force India
driver - Adrian Sutil
and Paul di Resta - ventured out, a consequence of having to use extra sets of tyres to make it as far as the final phase. Schumacher also didn't bother to post a time in Q3, although he did go out late on.
Further back, Sauber's Sergio Perez found himself on the cusp and just bumped out by di Resta in Q2. He was joined on the sidelines in the second session by Williams
duo Rubens Barrichello
and Pastor Maldonado, and the two Toro Rossos of Sebastien Buemi
and Jaime Alguersuari
- who sandwiched Bruno Senna in 15th. Kamui Kobayashi
made it into Q2 but failed to set a time after planting his car into the wall at the chicane. That incident briefly brought out the red flags. He will start 17th.
Vitaly Petrov filled the unlucky 18th sport after the first phase, pushed into the bottom seven late on by Senna in the sister Lotus Renault. Of the newer teams, Team Lotus' Heikki Kovalalinen and Jarno Trulli
proved pretty evenly matched and will fill row ten, while Virgin pair Timo Glock
and Jerome d'Ambrosio both improved on their final effort to move ahead of HRT's Daniel Ricciardo and Tonio Liuzzi. The Australian rookie out-qualified his team-mate for the second straight race, but it mattered little as Liuzzi carried a spurious five-place penalty from the Italian event.
To see the full times from qualifying for the F1 2011 Singapore Grand Prix
- CLICK HERE