Mark Webber, Red Bull, Barcelona, 2011

Webber stays on top in second practice

2011 Spanish GP second practicePosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Barcelona, 2011
Mark Webber, Red Bull, Barcelona, 2011

Mark Webber maintained his place at the top of the times sheets in the second practice session at the Circuit de Catalunya.

He ended the session just four hundredths of a second quicker than Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren.

Sebastian Vettel set a rapid 1’22.826 on soft tyres and came close to beating it on his next lap.

But Webber went over a third of a second faster when he came out of the pits a few minutes later.

Hamilton came very close to beating his time in the upgraded McLaren but fell short after matching the Red Bull through the first two sectors.

The other McLaren of Jenson Button was fourth.

Fernando Alonso took fifth with a 1’23.568 despite being held up by Nick Heidfeld’s Renault during his lap.

Team mate Felipe Massa had a trip into the gravel at turn five during the session and ended up eighth behind the Mercedes.

Narain Karthikeyan also went off but was able to get back on the track.

He frustrated Hamilton later in the session, holding him up at turn five. It was one of several instances of drivers being held up during a busy 90 minutes’ running.

Pos. Car Driver Car Best lap Gap
1 2 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’22.470 35
2 3 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1’22.509 0.039 27
3 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’22.826 0.356 37
4 4 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’23.188 0.718 32
5 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’23.568 1.098 34
6 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’23.586 1.116 35
7 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’23.981 1.511 30
8 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’24.278 1.808 30
9 16 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1’24.290 1.820 33
10 9 Nick Heidfeld Renault 1’24.366 1.896 31
11 17 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 1’24.483 2.013 38
12 10 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’24.786 2.316 43
13 18 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’25.296 2.826 33
14 11 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 1’25.303 2.833 38
15 19 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’25.457 2.987 34
16 12 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 1’25.603 3.133 43
17 15 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’26.073 3.603 32
18 20 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 1’26.417 3.947 37
19 14 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’27.123 4.653 20
20 21 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault 1’27.189 4.719 34
21 25 Jerome d’Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 1’28.036 5.566 36
22 24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 1’28.062 5.592 28
23 22 Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1’29.469 6.999 28
24 23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 1’29.476 7.006 31

2011 Spanish Grand Prix

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73 comments on “Webber stays on top in second practice”

  1. Gary Yogurt
    20th May 2011, 14:36

    Hope to see that name in the headlines here all weekend.

    1. Yeah, like “Webber scores first DNF for Red Bull”. Just joking, hope he does a good race…behind Vettel.

      1. Not a chance mate!

  2. Both HRTs would be out of the 107%. I thought this was not going to happen again after Malaysia.

    1. It’s the high dependence on downforce, and unfortunately HRT have barely got any.

      1. So I’m guessing we’ll see that again in Monaco?

        1. I very much doubt it, Monaco is much more dependent on Mechanical grip than many other tracks. It’s why we often see it being the leveler of cars where guys like Kubica can work wonders.

          1. If they drive a car with a lot of mechanical grip …

      2. It’s not only that. It’s also the fact that the other teams practiced a lot in this track and can easily find a better than usual optimum set-up while HRT haven’t practiced and are as compromised as any other track.

        I do think they will make it in the end though because the Red Bulls and Mclarens might be on hards on Q1. But if the new hard tyre is so slower than the previous hard that will force even those teams to put the soft, on, then HRT and maybe Virgin could be in trouble. Ironically the whole thing might depend on Team Lotus pace. If they actually find that one second they might scare a top team that wants to pass just barely with the hard tyre but i doubt the new hard tyre will really make them lose so much time.

        1. I guess it all depends on weather the fastest cars do a lap on hards in Q1.

          But from what i gather so far, the hards are really a lot slower, so it might be that even McLaren will have to use softs there.

    2. The 107% cut off applies to Q1, where the fastest guys will go through to Q2 on the hard compound tyre and the slower guys will qualify in Q1 on the soft compound tyre. So that’s easily a couple of seconds back right there.

    3. RBR could drop both HRT and Virgin out if they (for some strange reason) decide to use the soft tyre in Q1.

      1. Well the new hard is so slow everyone could be forced to use the soft in Q1, they don’t want a do another Webber, they made that mistake once.

      2. The hard tyres are about two seconds slower than the soft tyres so I think it’s going to be a brave decision not to use the hards in Q1. Therefore I think Red Bull and McLaren will do a run on the softs to be sure that they don’t get caught out. So unfortunately, HRT and Virgin could be in trouble.

        I just read a tweet from Andrew Benson, Hamilton described the new hard tyres as a ‘disaster’, Alonso said ‘it’s better not to say anything’.

        1. Oops that should be …brave decision not to use the softs in Q1.

        2. Even if they are 2 seconds slower, red Bull at least easily have that in hand over HRT. Then again, we thought that in China and look what happened to Webber.

    4. The only thing stopping teams missing the 107% at previous races was that Red Bull didn’t put much effort into Q1. Had RB set a representative time on soft tyres in Q1 at any point, then a lot more teams than HRT would have lost out on the rule.

  3. RBR’s got a little bit more to give, and I think WEB hasn’t hit the limit yet. FP3 will be interesting, but Qualy is going to be great.

    HRT’s – 2nd DNS for the year. This may be harsh, but they shouldnt be allowed a spot on the grid. They just cannot compete, on any level.

    1. Might as well just make it Ferrari vs Red Bull then…

      Considering they are closing on Virgin, I think it’s fair to say they can compete.

    2. HRT did beat Virgin last year in the Contructor’s Championship last year, so clearly they can compete on one level.

      As for not letting them on the grid, I do not agree with this viewpoint from people. They’ve made the effort to turn up and bring a car that fits the regulations. With the budget they have, they’ve done an OK job in my eyes. And anyway, other race series have much cars that are much slower than the quickest car. For those reasons I think HRT should be able to race regardless of their speed.

      1. HRT did beat Virgin last year in the Contructor’s Championship last year, so clearly they can compete on one level.

        HRT was “lucky” to finish in the 3 races that saw only 14 cars finish. They were dead last, but those P14’s were what “beat” Virgin.

        Other than that they were miles off the pace (ie a lap down) even compared to Virgin. Who in turn were battling with Lotus.

        Or maybe HRT simply bet on finishing races instead of actually going fast.

    3. Except that they have been competing all year, except for Australia.

      1. It is getting a bit ridiculous, but I tend to be very forgiving on this subject, as I believe the bigger the grid, the better. But if they can see they’re not going to be beating anyone even next year, I’d expect them to call it quits. Especially if they can’t even make the 107% rule, because that’s just embarrassing. All the best to them, however!

  4. Top time from Lewis! He was as fast as Webber in the second sector. It seems that McLaren have found the missing pace in Turkey. Still though Button is 4 tenths slower than the front-runners. I’m wondering why.

    1. Maybe more fuel? Less wing? More wing? Updates on? off? KERS? No KERS? Using DRS? Not using DRS?

      Good lap from Lewis though, but how long would that set of tyres have lasted?

      1. Still though Button is 4 tenths slower than the front-runners. I’m wondering why.

        Can we surmise that the updates is not working for him? Wait to see McLaren removing them for the sake of the equality…

        1. No they made them available to both drivers, if one chooses not to run them then that’s up to that driver.

          We’ve seen it already this season where Button ran some upgraded parts but Hamilton elected to take them off and go back to the older ones.

      2. it doesnt matter how long those tyres would have lasted.vettels quickest time was on his first flying lap,as was webbers.
        plus hamiltons race pace was very consistent anyway.
        and the reason why button was so much slower?well he was about 5tenths slower than lewis in turkey,so maybe button failed to set his car up properly again.

        1. Im NOT accepting that as an excuse from Button AGAIN!!! whether it is Practice quali or Race the fact is that Hamilton is simply faster than Button. I don’t know why these Button fans simply won’t accept it. It’s clear for everyone to see. (And im a Button Fan)

          1. One has to be a real masochist to support Button.

          2. Im NOT accepting that as an excuse from Button AGAIN!!!

            LOL. Button gets me really mad as well. He just makes excuses for absolutely everything, and all the time. Looks like he is back to excuse #1 after today’s practice-


            Someone please find Jenson that elusive ‘grip’ and ‘balance’ he has been missing his whole career.

            I always thought Rubens broke all whining records, but looks like Jenson is up there with him battling for the biggest whiner on the grid.

          3. I believe that every fan(even a Button fan) with his or her brain inside the head will agree that Lewis is a faster driver.

            Thing is though that I can’t tell what makes him a faster driver. Is it his aggresive style? I doubt that to be honest since the arrival of the Pirellis. Is it the set-up? How much difference lies between Jenson’s and Lewis’s setups when we’re talking about two teammates? I mean there aren’t many things to change and I don’t think that these changes can make a difference of 0,679 secs.

            I really don’t know.

    2. Testing different parts maybe?

    3. 4 tenths might seem like a lot but it is something that can be easily made up. Just as the gap between Webber and Vettel is about the same.

      1. Surely RBRs will be stronger when they will fully sort out their KERS problems, but yet this is one step forward if you consider the difference the two teams had in Turkey.
        Now about Jenson I think that the main reason is the track. We all know how smoothly he treats the car and the tyres. Catalunya is a track where you need to push hard to get a good time. So my view is that he’ll get better until tomorrow’s qualy.

        1. Yeah, but you could say the same about McLaren optimizing the diffusor or Ferrari getting a flex front wing.

          Its all about who improves most during the season. Its not as if the Red Bull KERS is that much easier to sort out than the speed for the other teams.

  5. Hamilton blitzing 2nd sector an amazing indication of the downforce in that McLaren. Hopefully he wasn’t running much lighter than the Red Bull’s, unfortunately stuff like this is always too good to be true :(

  6. Will f1fanatic find a way to cut webber down in the analysis after todays performance?

    1. AdrianMorse
      20th May 2011, 14:55

      Not to steal Keith’s (that looks pretty difficult to pronounce) march, but I think Vettel had the upper hand in their first (very) long stint on the hard tyres.

  7. Come on Mclaren make quali interesting!!! Get Vettel back down the grid and lets see how good he really is!!

    (unfortunatley this is a bit of a dream)

    I would be absolutley amazed if RBR don’t have lots more in the tank

  8. Nice to see Webbster finally get the same amount of laps out of of his hard tyres as Vets. 17 laps on both long runs.



  9. Mark’s looking strong which is nice and he does seem to go a tad better around this track than Seb does while they’ve been team mates. A good first day for Webber then but let’s be honest he can’t afford to finish behind Seb again. It took four races for him to put the car where it should be so at the very least for the team he needs to keep being on that second step even if he can’t beat Seb.

    1. Steph are we really going to get into this again…? First three race weekends were hampered by reliability issues so to take the points he did was very solid.

      1. “KERS failure, I repeat KERS failure. Do not use KERS…”

        1. I know he had some troubles early on and I do take that into account to some extent but even with kers trouble there was no way he should have qualified so low in China. Seb I believe also had to manage kers during either the race at Turkey or China (I think it was the former but I’m a little slow today) and yet still managed to beat Mark.

          1. First thing we agree on, you are a little slow today. Hes poor qualy in China has nothing to do with his ability to drive. The team made that call to only run on hards in Q1 and he was caught out as he needed the second lap to to get into Q2 as the tyre temps were not up enough on one flying lap. 18th to 3rd, I’m not complaining ;] Also Webbster lost whole practice sessions due to KERS failures & the real problem is when KERS comes on then goes off then comes on this really hampers his weekend as they do not know which direction to to go with the setup. You would rather know if its off all together as the car needs to be setup very different…

          2. Regardless of why he has not performed, I think what Steph meant to say is that he NEEDS to perform…

          3. Ok first thing this doesn’t have to descend into a personal argument as that just destroys any point either of us are trying to make. Secondly, the tyre strategy was mad but that’s still not just the team’s fault as they work together and it was far from a great lap anyway by Webber. Thirdly, the issue of losing time in practice doesn’t mean much when Seb wrecked his Friday at the last Grand Prix and once again beat his team mate.

            I’m not anti-Mark. I quite like and rate him and Seb and think they’re very good characters for the sport. I also think Mark’s been incredibly unlucky throughout times in his career even at the beginning of this year but the fact is Seb has shown him up all season. Last year Seb was the one having all of the technical problems this year it seems to be more Mark but either way he has to make the best of the situation and frankly I don’t think he’s done good enough.

          4. Nothing here is personal… We are two coconuts killing time on opposite sides of the globe. You wrote it & I agreed…

            KERS is a massive advantage particularly in China and to lug the extra weight for no use in Qualy hurts big time. Mark is 17KG heavier than Vets so all the extra weight is a killer. A separate issue i’ve already raised however the rules on weight distribution really needs cleaning up so that there is parity for all drivers. Back to the topic, it was a poor lap for the reason i previously mentioned. To reiterate he needed a second lap to get the tyres up to the right temp/pressure and if you remember it was pretty cool temp wise in China on Saturday. They were caught out by the clock. Mark was hampered with issues in P1/P2 then lost all of P3 which doesn’t even come close to Vets loosing P1 which was also in the wet which had no relevance to setup as it was a dry weekend…

            So early in the championship & hes 3rd on the points table. Nothing overly poor about that. Plenty of time to sort out the men from boys…

  10. I noticed that Sauber’s uptades seem to work just fine. They clearly are above other middle teams and they seem to be ready to give Renault a hard time this weekend.

    It seems we have this six groups now.
    1)Red Bull followed by Mclaren
    2)Ferrari and Mercedes
    3)Renault and Sauber
    4)Williams, Toro Rosso and Force India(although from this practice FI might go with Lotus)
    5)Team Lotus
    6)Virgin followed by HRT

  11. Umm just been looking at speedtrap readouts: Massa @ 324.9k, Alonso @ 321.1k, Hamilton-Button @ 315.4k, Vettel @ 312k and Webber @ 311.6k… Are McLaren and RB really losing out that big a chunk of straightline speed to Ferrari? Or am I forgetting to factor in something? Coz come the straight with the DRS activated (not to forget that Ferrari DRS blows McLaren’s out of the water) and McLaren are history (hopefully RB too with them)…

    1. The Ferrari has less downforce so will be quicker in a straight line. However to make best use of the DRS they need to be close coming out of the corner and with low downforce I doubt that will happen.

    2. Downforce brings with it a drag penalty, and iirc Red Bull last year were only quicker than the new teams on some straights. But downforce is generally much more important than high speed, although teams try to maximise downforce without too much drag.

    3. Yea I am aware of the downforce-drag tradeoff, but 12k difference between RB/Ferrari and 10k between McL/Ferrari seems like quite a lot…

      1. Well, if we put the compare speed trap data with last year’s qualifying at the same track (the link for which is below), Red Bull were 9 kph down on the Ferraris last year with the same fuel. When you factor in the different fuel loads in practices, you can see that 12 kph isn’t that big an amount.

    4. I don’t think RBR and McLaren really care how fast anyone is going down the straight. They would probably gladly go even slower if they could find more downforce with good marginal efficiency.

      There is an interesting interview with FI’s technical director today in which he describes how efficiency is no longer the relevant aim; it’s maximum downforce. And FI is reshaping their entire aero concept now in that direction, away from the efficient car that could run up front at Spa.

      The ability to run DRS in qualifying probably amplifies this trend, because overall efficiency is less important when you can dump downforce at will. You want to pile on the downforce for the corners, where drag doesn’t matter.

    5. What do you mean Ferrari’s DRS blows McLaren’s out of the water? By the way, are there really major differences between the DRS of the teams?

      1. Yes there are. It depends on how the teams design the rear wing. The upper element is the only one that moves when DRS is activated. A rear wing with a small upper element will not benefit as much as a wing with a larger upper element. Of course, I’d imagine using a large upper element leads to compromises in other aspects of rear wing design.

  12. This is where it all turned around for Webber last year, hoping for a bit of repeating history.

    Fear otherwise however.

    1. True. Webber was pretty sub par at the beginning of 2010 as well. Bahrain he qualified in 6th, and was battling Button and Schumacher and finished 8th. In Australia he made mistakes and finished out of the points. Webber was getting outperformed by Seb in all of the 1st four races last year… but in Barcelona, Webber suddenly upped his game, and I think he is capable of doing something similar again.

      I think Vettel is definitely the better driver, but we need Mark to keep this championship interesting.

  13. I agree with you and hope Webbo does manage to turn it around though I’ve got a niggling feeling it won’t happen.

    Adrian Newey was actually quoted in Turkey saying how he thought the points difference between Vettel and Webber and the end of the championship this year will be significantly greater than it was last year…and I have a feeling he may be right.

    Webbo though seriously needs to sort out his starts…the starts and being hard on the tyres are his achilles heel!

    If he can get a good start on Sunday and not fall behind a car that will hold him up, I think he’ll be in with a good shout of outright honours.

    Anyway I have a nasty feeling it won’t be a repeat of last year…

    As long as Vettel doesn’t dominate again I’ll be happy.

    1. Yeah a real shame but theres always tomorrow. Hard to tell if the upgrades did much as the Hulk was quicker than Suts in P1…

  14. Webber:
    “It did go a little bit longer than the old hard would have done here. My first set was pretty decent and we had a pretty good run, but in the second set there was a bit of mystery. We didn’t get the performance out of those that we would have liked.”

    Random tyres again, F1 lottery anyone?

  15. Oh My Force India Look soooo slow this weekend…

    1. I reckon that their new updates didn’t work.

    2. They are redesigning their whole aero concept bit by bit now. Expect them to be like molasses for another 3-4 races.

  16. button has blamed his lack of pace on “the balance not being right”.im sorry jenson,i think your a very good driver,but complaining about the balance not being right,or the set up not being right after practice and quali all the time is very annoying.

    1. Specifically, he says the car is too loose. Basically, Button’s supposed tire preserving nous is not a result of uncommon smoothness or skill, it comes down to his unwillingness/inability to hustle a car that is loose on entry. Yes that car burns less tire than a very tight car, but it has less ultimate pace. Result, Button leaves .2-.4s on the track in favor of a speculative gain from making one less stop in the race, which usually fails to materialize. Which is to say, he is slow, in principle and in practice.

  17. Kovalainen beats Sutil again…Adrian has become even worse this year.

    1. Yeah, he only knows how to “celebrate” with a broken bottle :(

  18. in Q&A Hamilton said :

    “Let’s wait until tomorrow to see how close we really are to them. It really depends on what engine mode they are on.”

    does this mean Mclaren might have tried “none off-throttle blown” soloution??

    1. I doubt it. RBR might of…. nah

    2. I thought he was referring to the oft speculated RBR Q3 engine mode—some kind of extreme setting that can only be used for a short time.

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