Webber quickest in middle sector at Nurburgring

2011 German GP qualifying analysis

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Nurburgring, 2011

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Nurburgring, 2011

Front row starters Mark Webber and Lewis Hamilton were separated by less than a tenth of a second at the Nurburgring.

But their cars are strong in different parts of the lap: Hamilton was quickest in the first and last sectors, but only fourth-fastest in the middle.

Here’s all the data from qualifying for the German Grand Prix.

Qualifying times in full

  • Webber said he’d not had a clean lap in Q2 which partly explains why he found more time than the other drivers in Q3.
  • Unusually, three drivers weren’t able to improve on their best times in Q3.
Driver Car Q1 Q2 (vs Q1) Q3 (vs Q2)
1 Mark Webber Red Bull 1’33.096 1’31.311 (-1.785) 1’30.079 (-1.232)
2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 1’32.934 1’30.998 (-1.936) 1’30.134 (-0.864)
3 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1’32.973 1’31.017 (-1.956) 1’30.216 (-0.801)
4 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’32.916 1’31.150 (-1.766) 1’30.442 (-0.708)
5 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’31.826 1’31.582 (-0.244) 1’30.910 (-0.672)
6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’32.785 1’31.343 (-1.442) 1’31.263 (-0.080)
7 Jenson Button McLaren 1’33.224 1’31.532 (-1.692) 1’31.288 (-0.244)
8 Adrian Sutil Force India 1’32.286 1’31.809 (-0.477) 1’32.010 (+0.201)
9 Vitaly Petrov Renault 1’33.187 1’31.985 (-1.202) 1’32.187 (+0.202)
10 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1’32.603 1’32.180 (-0.423) 1’32.482 (+0.302)
11 Nick Heidfeld Renault 1’32.505 1’32.215 (-0.290)
12 Paul di Resta Force India 1’32.651 1’32.560 (-0.091)
13 Pastor Maldonado Williams 1’33.003 1’32.635 (-0.368)
14 Rubens Barrichello Williams 1’33.664 1’33.043 (-0.621)
15 Sergio Perez Sauber 1’33.295 1’33.176 (-0.119)
16 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso 1’33.635 1’33.546 (-0.089)
17 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso 1’33.658 1’33.698 (+0.040)
18 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 1’33.786
19 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus 1’35.599
20 Timo Glock Virgin 1’36.400
21 Karun Chandhok Lotus 1’36.422
22 Jerome D’Ambrosio Virgin 1’36.641
23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT 1’37.011
24 Daniel Ricciardo HRT 1’37.036

Team mate comparisons

Compare the best times of each team’s drivers in the last part of qualifying in which they both set a time.

  • Hamilton was much quicker than Jenson Button – he had over a second in hand over his team mate.
  • Michael Schumacher was even further behind Nico Rosberg. He said: “In qualifying I was still nearly a second away and couldn’t have matched his time, so we have to analyse deeply what could be the reason for it. Obviously then, I tried to push even harder to compensate which lead to a mistake in the last chicane on my last lap, probably costing me P8.”
  • Adrian Sutil out-qualified Paul di Resta for the third time in ten attempts, with a comfortable margin of three-quarters of a second. Interestingly, di Resta described his set-up as “race-orientated”.
  • In his second race, Daniel Ricciardo all-but matched team mate Vitantonio Liuzzi’s qualifying time.
Team Driver Lap time Gap Lap time Driver Round
Red Bull Sebastian Vettel 1’30.216 +0.137 1’30.079 Mark Webber Q3
McLaren Lewis Hamilton 1’30.134 -1.154 1’31.288 Jenson Button Q3
Ferrari Fernando Alonso 1’30.442 -0.468 1’30.910 Felipe Massa Q3
Mercedes Michael Schumacher 1’32.482 +1.219 1’31.263 Nico Rosberg Q3
Renault Nick Heidfeld 1’32.215 +0.230 1’31.985 Vitaly Petrov Q2
Williams Rubens Barrichello 1’33.043 +0.408 1’32.635 Pastor Maldonado Q2
Force India Adrian Sutil 1’31.809 -0.751 1’32.560 Paul di Resta Q2
Sauber Kamui Kobayashi 1’33.786 +0.491 1’33.295 Sergio Perez Q1
Toro Rosso Sebastien Buemi 1’33.546 -0.152 1’33.698 Jaime Alguersuari Q2
Lotus Heikki Kovalainen 1’35.599 -0.823 1’36.422 Karun Chandhok Q1
HRT Daniel Ricciardo 1’37.036 +0.025 1’37.011 Vitantonio Liuzzi Q1
Virgin Timo Glock 1’36.400 -0.241 1’36.641 Jerome D’Ambrosio Q1

Sector times

Here are the drivers? best times in each sector.

  • Hamilton was fastest in two out of three sectors but admitted afterwards he was surprised by his performance: “I don?t really know where I found the time, and to be honest I?m going to get a recording of the onboard footage and watch it back because I?d love to see it.”
  • However he gave a clue to what’s behind McLaren’s improved pace, referring to changes made to the cars “engine modes”.
  • Red Bull’s performance advantage in sector two – predominantly mid-to-high speed corners – is exactly what we’ve come to expect of the RB7 and, indeed, its recent predecessors.
Driver Sector 1 Sector 2 Sector 3
Mark Webber 29.831 (2) 36.883 (1) 23.282 (3)
Lewis Hamilton 29.713 (1) 37.257 (4) 23.164 (1)
Sebastian Vettel 29.921 (3) 37.073 (2) 23.222 (2)
Fernando Alonso 29.934 (4) 37.167 (3) 23.341 (5)
Felipe Massa 30.136 (6) 37.372 (5) 23.343 (6)
Nico Rosberg 30.246 (7) 37.628 (6) 23.307 (4)
Jenson Button 30.100 (5) 37.767 (7) 23.401 (7)
Adrian Sutil 30.496 (10) 37.809 (9) 23.481 (8)
Vitaly Petrov 30.506 (11) 37.768 (8) 23.711 (10)
Michael Schumacher 30.471 (9) 37.830 (11) 23.541 (9)
Nick Heidfeld 30.441 (8) 37.815 (10) 23.712 (11)
Paul di Resta 30.525 (12) 38.216 (15) 23.737 (12)
Pastor Maldonado 30.736 (13) 38.002 (12) 23.897 (13)
Rubens Barrichello 30.801 (15) 38.144 (13) 23.994 (16)
Sergio Perez 30.797 (14) 38.150 (14) 23.908 (14)
Sebastien Buemi 30.965 (17) 38.566 (18) 23.968 (15)
Jaime Alguersuari 30.964 (16) 38.385 (16) 24.077 (17)
Kamui Kobayashi 31.074 (18) 38.402 (17) 24.125 (18)
Heikki Kovalainen 31.515 (19) 39.565 (19) 24.427 (19)
Timo Glock 31.726 (20) 40.081 (23) 24.593 (21)
Karun Chandhok 31.784 (21) 39.822 (20) 24.539 (20)
Jerome D’Ambrosio 31.934 (22) 39.978 (21) 24.729 (24)
Vitantonio Liuzzi 32.087 (23) 40.027 (22) 24.663 (23)
Daniel Ricciardo 32.188 (24) 40.175 (24) 24.647 (22)

Speed trap

Here are the drivers? maximum speeds.

  • No surprises here – Schumacher’s Mercedes is the fastest car in a straight line again.
Pos Driver Car Speed (kph) Gap
1 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 310.4
2 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 310.3 -0.1
3 Felipe Massa Ferrari 309.8 -0.6
4 Paul di Resta Force India 306.9 -3.5
5 Adrian Sutil Force India 306.9 -3.5
6 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 306.2 -4.2
7 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 305.8 -4.6
8 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso 305.7 -4.7
9 Vitaly Petrov Renault 305.5 -4.9
10 Nick Heidfeld Renault 305.3 -5.1
11 Jenson Button McLaren 304.6 -5.8
12 Pastor Maldonado Williams 304.4 -6.0
13 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso 304.2 -6.2
14 Rubens Barrichello Williams 303.8 -6.6
15 Sergio Perez Sauber 303.4 -7.0
16 Timo Glock Virgin 302.1 -8.3
17 Jerome D’Ambrosio Virgin 301.8 -8.6
18 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 301.8 -8.6
19 Mark Webber Red Bull 299.1 -11.3
20 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 298.9 -11.5
21 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus 298.2 -12.2
22 Karun Chandhok Lotus 298.0 -12.4
23 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT 294.3 -16.1
24 Daniel Ricciardo HRT 294.1 -16.3

2011 German Grand Prix

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36 comments on Webber quickest in middle sector at Nurburgring

  1. pSynrg (@psynrg) said on 23rd July 2011, 18:08

    My fave part of the weekend, cheers for the numbers Keith.

    Jenson must be weeping…

    The Bull’s are vulnerable without a doubt. Look at that speed trap. They’ll get gobbled up with DRS!

  2. Fixy (@fixy) said on 23rd July 2011, 18:13

    Very good effort by Daniel – although Liuzzi complained about the car and probably didn’t push too much knowing he had a grid penalty.

  3. usukpam said on 23rd July 2011, 18:28

    the feraris and the macs will get sweep past if they find their cars behind the red bulls at drs zone.

  4. ralph schumi said on 23rd July 2011, 18:37

    Can someone please explain what changes are made to the set up and balance of a car when it has a wet weather setup?

    • Ideally the suspension is softened, the ride height raised and the brake balance moved toward the rear of the car.

      Parc Fermé conditions limit what they can actually do these days though, and more often then not it’ll probably just be a change on the engine mapping or diff settings.

  5. dfketr said on 23rd July 2011, 18:53

    i dont think mclaren has found anything extra, look at the speed traps yesterday, they were down by about 11km/h to schumacher and were obviously running high fuel. now with the rules on the exhaust blown diffusers back to how they were pre silverstone it is no surprise to see them at the top again, they had the fastest car in race trim in many of the races leading up to the rule change.

  6. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 23rd July 2011, 19:45

    Some unbelievable driving! (I’ve only just caught up with the qualifying as I’ve been at work!) Best qualifying this year surely. Absolutely speechless at Lewis’ lap!

    Perhaps Michael Schumacher has a too lower downforce setup. I’m thinking this as he seems to be faster than Nico in a straight line. If it rains, then his setup will obviously be more downforce orientated, and we know what he can do in the rain so it’s not the last we’ve seen from him. He’ll probably make a good start and have great race pace as usual so we’ll see.

    Cannot wait for this race though.

  7. DaveW said on 23rd July 2011, 19:55

    Hamilton is very fast in the slow bits of S1 and S3 which suggests that his car is compliant over curbs and has good traction, i.e, it is soft at the back and has some roll. These are good traits for rain.

    Ferrari’s drop off is perplexing. I was cold, but it was cold in Silverstone too. Given that the tires look set to last for half the race, it doesn’t seem like Alonso will see Hamilton and the RBRs fall back toward him due to tire consumption this time.

  8. Mehmeh said on 23rd July 2011, 20:01

    Bueni has been excluded due to fuel irregularities

  9. tuee said on 23rd July 2011, 20:08

    hamilton has a dry setup,while the bulls and the ferraris have a in the middle setup to (rain and dry). Button has a setup for wet.
    Hamilton and button are risking it, hamilton hopes it it does n’t rain otherwise he is toasted while button prays for rain.
    That’s why there’s the massive difference between hamilton and button. there’s not way hamilton is 1.1 seconds faster than button. he is 2-3 tenths at best.

    • georges10099 said on 23rd July 2011, 22:03

      stop being so pessimistic ;) give the guy praise as he surely deserves it!!!

      • tuee said on 23rd July 2011, 22:45

        no pesimistic,realistic!!

        • Funkyf1 said on 24th July 2011, 4:36

          Great comment and very realistic, that is the difference between the two drivers. Hamilton will drive the wheels off his car set up on the edge, Button prefers a more conservative approach and always looks ahead to the race as his single lap pace is never as quick as Lewis’s. Looking forward to a great race.

          • georges10099 said on 24th July 2011, 9:25

            hmm. i cant say i agree there as most of the races this season lewis has finished ahead of jenson!

    • Syed said on 24th July 2011, 6:12

      On what basis do you claim that mate? I’d love to believe you but ???

  10. James said on 23rd July 2011, 20:34

    By my reckoning, Alonso has won this year’s qualifying battle against Massa, 10-0. I’m sure this isnt going to do Massa any favours in negotiating the slim chances of a further extension to his contract next year

  11. Ell (@ell) said on 23rd July 2011, 20:49

    This is the first race this season where I haven’t backed Hamilton to win. His qualifying lap left me speechless.

  12. Ell (@ell) said on 23rd July 2011, 21:03

    Also, these stats are very interesting. No surprise to see the Red Bulls quick in the 2nd sector, but Hamilton quicker in the other 2 is a shock. If he gets off the line well, he could pass Webber in the DRS straight. Also, Hamilton seems to be the best at managing his KERS, which could be big to decide the race. But no-one has taken into account that Hamilton started 5th, and was 2nd by turn 1. It might have been helped by KERS, but he is a lot futher back then he was then. The start will be crucial here, as it has been proved hard to overtake in recent years. Come on Lewis!
    Also,Keith, when i post a comment, i have to refresh then post. I can’t reply either.

  13. shadow13 (@shadow13) said on 23rd July 2011, 21:37

    I think Lotus are mad now if they don’t give Trulli his seat back. Chandhok has not done awfully but he is brilliant plus he slipped off again. How many cars does his contract allow him to write off?

    • shadow13 (@shadow13) said on 23rd July 2011, 21:38

      EDIT: Not brilliant.

    • James said on 24th July 2011, 0:09

      To be fair, he hasnt had a lot of running this year. The few practice sessions he has taken part in have only see him do a handful of laps for various reasons.

      On this basis, should we be saying that Ricciardo should be dropped as he has qualified last in both sessions he has taken part in?

      • Funkyf1 said on 24th July 2011, 4:42

        Ricciardo should be in the Lotus then he wouldn’t be last, but rumours have it that Karun paid for his drive not something everyone can afford.

        • Aussie Fan said on 24th July 2011, 5:09

          Also Riccardio Matched his teammate in only his 2nd quali ever…thats a bit of a different story to what we are talking about here.

  14. Young One said on 23rd July 2011, 22:27

    So, he will be jumped at first, or people will get to him on third sector.

  15. craig-o (@craig-o) said on 23rd July 2011, 23:44

    19th and 20th in the speed traps?? Hmm…

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