GP Italia, prove sabato–07/09/2013
Italian GP: Vettel leads all-Red Bull front row at Monza
Sebastian Vettel claimed pole position for the Italian Grand Prix as all his Formula 1 championship rivals made a mess of their qualifying sessions.
Fernando Alonso could only qualify fifth amid failed attempts at slipstreaming tactics by Ferrari, while neither Lewis Hamilton nor Kimi Raikkonen made it into the top 10.
Mark Webber, meanwhile, made it a Red Bull one-two, while an astounding effort from Nico Hulkenberg gave the struggling Sauber team a shock third place on the grid.
Ferrari had experimented with its drivers giving each other slipstreams in final practice, but its efforts to orchestrate the same strategy in Q3 fell apart.
The cars were never close enough to make the tactic work and appeared to end up spoiling each other’s laps. Felipe Massa eventually found himself fourth ahead of Alonso.
Webber looked to have a shot at pipping Vettel right at the end, but was first on the scene as Jean-Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso ploughed through the Parabolica gravel.
That left Vettel clearly on pole with a 1m23.755s lap, 0.2 seconds quicker than his team-mate.
Although Adrian Sutil is being investigated for impeding Hamilton’s Mercedes at the Parabolica at the end of Q2, the Briton blamed poor driving on his part for the qualifying result.
Lotus appeared to be simply short of pace, with Raikkonen and team-mate Romain Grosjean only 11th and 13th.
While they all underperformed, Hulkenberg starred with a Q3 lap just 0.037s off Webber’s Red Bull and ahead of the Ferraris and Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes.
Toro Rosso got two cars in Q3, with Daniel Ricciardo seventh but Vergne’s mistake leaving him 10th.
The two McLarens start behind them, Sergio Perez outqualifying Jenson Button.
Sutil is currently 14th, pending any penalty. Force India looked in jeopardy of a Q1 exit until late improvements for both drivers, but there was little progress in Q2.
Paul di Resta ended up 16th, just behind fellow late Q1 escapee Pastor Maldonado.
Rookies Esteban Gutierrez and Valtteri Bottas were ultimately the drivers who joined the Caterhams and Marussias at the back.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m23.755s 2. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m23.968s +0.213s 3. Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1m24.065s +0.310s 4. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m24.132s +0.377s 5. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m24.142s +0.387s 6. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m24.192s +0.437s 7. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m24.209s +0.454s 8. Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1m24.502s +0.747s 9. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m24.515s +0.760s 10. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m28.050s +4.295s Q2 cut-off time: 1m24.776s Gap ** 11. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1m24.610s +0.633s 12. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m24.803s +0.826s 13. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m24.848s +0.871s 14. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m24.932s +0.955s 15. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1m25.011s +1.034s 16. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m25.077s +1.100s Q1 cut-off time: 1m25.030s Gap * 17. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.226s +0.907s 18. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1m25.291s +0.972s 19. Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1m26.406s +2.087s 20. Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1m26.563s +2.244s 21. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1m27.085s +2.766s 22. Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1m27.480s +3.161s 107% time: 1m30.221s
* Gap to quickest in Q1
** Gap to quickest in Q2
Italian GP: Vettel keeps Red Bull on top in FP3
Sebastian Vettel kept his Red Bull out of Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari’s reach in final practice ahead of Italian Grand Prix qualifying.
The session was a battle between Alonso and Red Bull duo Vettel and Mark Webber throughout.
Vettel repeated his Friday afternoon performance at first with a 1m24.551s lap that was six tenths of a second clear of his two rivals.
Alonso could feel there was more speed to come though, having abandoned a better lap due to yellow flags for Paul di Resta crashing at the Parabolica.
Ferrari had previously tried slipstreaming tactics, with Alonso and Felipe Massa taking turns to tow each other round on their first runs.
When they switched to softer tyres for the final laps, Vettel improved first to a 1m24.478s, then a 1m24.360s.
Alonso took second from Webber as both also improved on each of their last runs.
But the order remained the same, with Alonso in a Red Bull sandwich and the trio covered by 0.317s.
Lewis Hamilton ultimately got within 0.035s of Webber in his Mercedes.
His team-mate Nico Rosberg will go into qualifying somewhat compromised as a technical problem limited him to only five laps in the session.
McLaren had an encouraging morning as Sergio Perez took fifth and Jenson Button eighth after a long top-five spell.
Toro Rosso, which won at Monza with Vettel in 2008, also showed great promise as Red Bull-bound Daniel Ricciardo blasted in two rapid laps on his final run to earn sixth ahead of Massa.
Pastor Maldonado put Williams in the top 10 in ninth, as Lotus slumped to 10th and 14th with Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean.
Aside from di Resta’s Parabolica accident, which he put down to a technical breakage on his Force India, there were also incidents at the Ascaris for Adrian Sutil and Jean-Eric Vergne. Both continued unscathed.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m24.360s 18 2. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m24.643s +0.283 13 3. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1m24.677s +0.317 22 4. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m24.712s +0.352 17 5. Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1m24.864s +0.504 19 6. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m24.865s +0.505 19 7. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m24.995s +0.635 14 8. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m25.103s +0.743 15 9. Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1m25.116s +0.756 20 10. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1m25.120s +0.760 18 11. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m25.136s +0.776 16 12. Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.273s +0.913 21 13. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.324s +0.964 22 14. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m25.499s +1.139 17 15. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1m25.660s +1.300 21 16. Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1m25.702s +1.342 19 17. Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1m26.120s +1.760 11 18. Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1m26.607s +2.247 21 19. Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1m27.172s +2.812 20 20. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1m27.605s +3.245 18 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1m27.665s +3.305 18 22. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m27.822s +3.462 5