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`Guy who`s retiring` gets one over on Webber.

For only the second time in 2008, David Coulthard got the better of Red Bull Racing Formula 1 team-mate Mark Webber in qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji this weekend – then quipped that the Australian was probably frustrated with his performance 'because he doesn't want to be behind a guy who's retiring, and [2009 RBR driver Sebastian] Vettel is looking pretty hot for next year'.

Whilst both of the Milton Keynes-based concern's RB4s had lapped comfortably inside the top ten during the damp final practice session this morning, with Coulthard sixth and Webber eighth, on a dry track in qualifying that pace was no longer evident, as both drivers failed to make the Q3 cut – albeit in the former's case by the narrowest margin of a scant eight hundredths of a second.

“It was very close today,” the Scot reflected, after achieving nonetheless his sixth-best grid spot of the campaign and out-pacing Webber for the first time since the season curtain-raiser Down Under in Melbourne back in March. “That was one of my better qualifying sessions; each of my laps was very tidy.

“On the last lap I was quicker going into the final corner, but I seemed to drag more speed going into the apex, which made me very slow down to the start-finish straight. I would love to have got through to Q3, as it would have meant more driving in the car on low fuel, but I don't think there was much more I could have got out of the car with the balance I had.”

“I wasn't quick enough today,” rued a phlegmatic Webber, who will begin the race from two spots behind Coulthard on the grid in 13th, “and when you don't get the times you don't go through. I didn't get it together in Q2, and you pay the price.

“There was more to get from the car, but I over-drove in the last sector. It was a shame as I had had a good feeling for the car both yesterday and this morning, but qualifying didn't seem to work out for us today. It will be difficult from there tomorrow.”

That much was corroborated by the energy drinks-backed squad's team principal Christian Horner, with RBR currently locked in a tight three-way tussle for sixth spot in the constructors' title chase with 'junior' outfit Scuderia Toro Rosso and Williams. To compound matters, both STR3s in the hands of Sebastian Vettel and Sébastien Bourdais made it through to the top ten.

“While it's disappointing not to make it into Q3, David drove well in both sessions and was unlucky to miss the final cut by just 0.08 seconds,” reflected Horner, “but eleventh obviously leaves him free to pick his strategy for tomorrow. Mark didn't manage to string his best three sectors together, which leaves a lot of work for him from 13th on the grid.”

“That was disappointing not to get into Q3,” agreed Renault principal track support engineer Fabrice Lom. “DC had a good session and was very, very close to getting through to Q3 – I think he was just 0.08 seconds off.

“At least this is a track where you should be able to overtake and gain positions in the dry, so we'll have to make sure we're ready to make the most of anything that might happen ahead of us tomorrow.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
David Coulthard (GBR) Reb Bull RB4, Japanese F1, Fuji, 10th-12th, October, 2008
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, 3rd place Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 pole position and 2nd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Circuit Atmosphere
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB13 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM010
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW40
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12
25.03.2017 - Qualifying, Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12

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St. Lewis - Unregistered

October 12, 2008 12:44 AM

Good Boy Rob ...heres a bone ..now go boy woof, I will bump them off the track ,and then you can pounce on them slander them, have rabid attacks... Now that sound like a Plan :D !woof!

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