Mark Webber secured his first pole position of the 2013 season this afternoon by beating reigning World Champion and team-mate Sebastian Vettel into 2nd place in qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix.
The German was hampered by KERS issues throughout FP3 and the first two qualifying segments, enabling Webber to score his 12th F1 pole position and his first since the 2012 Korean Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton was 3rd for Mercedes, ahead of Lotus’ Romain Grosjean. Felipe Massa outqualified team-mate Fernando Alonso by taking 5th, with Nico Rosberg and Nico Hulkenberg taking 6th and 7th between the two Ferrari’s. Kimi Raikkonen was 9th, the fourth race in a row he had failed to make it into the top eight in qualifying, with Jenson Button repeating his 1:31:8 lap time and lining up 10th for McLaren.
That leaves him one place ahead of team-mate Sergio Perez who just failed to make the cut in Q2, with Paul Di Resta claiming his Force India team had made a little progress with the Scot setting 12th quickest time. Bottas sneaked his Williams ahead of Esteban Gutierrez and Pastor Maldonado, but Toro Rosso’s qualifying was one to forget as Daniel Ricciardo was the slowest driver to complete Q2, while team-mate Jean Eric Vergne was left in flames at the side of the circuit when the rear brakes on his car seized in Q1. Adrian Sutil was ahead of the Frenchman in 17th, but one of the biggest surprises of the day was Max Chilton’s effort for 19th, allowing Marussia to out-qualify rivals Caterham for the first time in several months.
CLASSIFICATION – QUALIFYING – JAPANESE GRAND PRIX
|12||Di Resta||Force India||1:31:992|
|21||Van Der Garde||Caterham||1:34:879|
POSDRIVERTEAMLAP TIME1WebberRed Bull1:30:9152VettelRed Bull1:31:0893HamiltonMercedes1:31:2534GrosjeanLotus1:31:3655MassaFerrari1:31:3786RosbergMercedes1:31:3977HulkenbergSauber1:31:6448AlonsoFerrari1:31:6659RaikkonenLotus1:31:68410ButtonMcLaren1:31:82711PerezMcLaren1:31:98912Di RestaForce India1:31:99213BottasWilliams1:32:01314GutierrezSauber1:32:06315MaldonadoWilliams1:32:09316RicciardoToro Rosso1:32:48517SutilForce India1:32:89018VergneToro Rosso1:33:35719ChiltonMarussia1:34:32020PicCaterham1:34:55621Van Der GardeCaterham1:34:87922BianchiMarussia1:4:958