Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Suzuka, 2011

2011 Japanese Grand Prix grid

2011 Japanese Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Row 1 1. Sebastian Vettel 1’30.466
Red Bull
2. Jenson Button 1’30.475
Row 2 3. Lewis Hamilton 1’30.617
4. Felipe Massa 1’30.804
Row 3 5. Fernando Alonso 1’30.886
6. Mark Webber 1’31.156
Red Bull
Row 4 7. Kamui Kobayashi* No time
8. Michael Schumacher No time
Row 5 9. Bruno Senna No time
10. Vitaly Petrov No time
Row 6 11. Adrian Sutil 1’32.463
Force India
12. Paul di Resta 1’32.746
Force India
Row 7 13. Rubens Barrichello 1’33.079
14. Pastor Maldonado 1’33.224
Row 8 15. Sebastien Buemi 1’33.227
Toro Rosso
16. Jaime Alguersuari 1’33.427
Toro Rosso
Row 9 17. Sergio Perez No time
18. Heikki Kovalainen 1’35.454
Row 10 19. Jarno Trulli 1’35.514
20. Jerome D’Ambrosio 1’36.439
Row 11 21. Timo Glock 1’36.507
22. Daniel Ricciardo 1’37.846
Row 12 23. Nico Rosberg No time
24. Vitantonio Liuzzi No time

*Originally listed as tenth, he will in fact start seventh as he attempted to start a flying lap.

2011 Japanese Grand Prix

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52 comments on “2011 Japanese Grand Prix grid”

  1. Oh, look: pole position for Vettel, and a stupid mistake from Hamilton.

    This year in a nutshell, really.

    1. Exactly. I don’t know whats more enjoyable – Vettel on the limit on his final lap, or yet another mistake by Hamilton/McLaren meaning this website changes from a sports website to a comedy website for the rest of the weekend.

      1. @Hamish I’m not convinced that was such a brilliant lap from Vettel. He must have nailed it in Sector 3 as his Sector 1 time was pretty pants and he only managed to go green in Sector 2. Still, he did what he needed to do so fair play to him!

      2. @hamish to me neither were. The whole session was largely spent just waiting to see who was taking the trouble of setting a lap at all. We had about 2 minutes of exitement in Q2 and the exitement in Q3 was largely Kobayashi showing himself for the fans.

        Instead of getting a tight shoutout for qualifying we saw part of Vettels lap that was not that special, we saw Button coming short and then found out Hamilton did not even get to set a fast lap anymore.

        Sure Vettel might have been honestly supprised he got pole with that lap, but only because others not living up to expectations. And to make it worse, he even used the exact same lines to celebrate it that he has been using numerous times this year already. An anti-climax really.

        1. And he used the exact same car he used in other races this year to take pole, what rubbish.

          1. Yep, it’s all pretty shameful. Vettel clearly needs to spend less time worrying about his racing and more time worrying about keeping fans adequately entertained!

        2. Did anyone else notice Kobayashi DRS’ing trough 130R in his final Q2 attempt? I had my heart in my mouth, with the memory of his practice lucky escape in my mind!

          Does anyone know were other cars able to keep the rear wing opened in 130R apart from the Red Bulls?

    2. Well said.

  2. Vettel’s lap was visibly on the limit, astonishing to watch.

    1. He was, but I feel he could’ve gone some hundreths faster had he not made that slight mistake.

  3. If only Hamilton got over the line in time…still, it’s gonna be a cracking race tomorrow! McLaren look to have similar pace to Red Bull this weekend, I don’t think Seb will be able to drive into the distance so easily!

  4. Amazing lap from Vettel. Nearly lost it a couple of times…

  5. Simply fantastic. I was on the edge of my seat for the final minute. Vettel’s lap was superb. Well done to Button as well, and to Massa for beating Alonso!

    Shame Hamilton didn’t get around for one last lap, but other than that, it was amazing.

  6. Go kobayashi emotional time for him

  7. It’s Seb’s 12th pole, Keith

  8. How about Button having a good start passing Vettel and Hamilton thinking “I can do that!” trying the same, crashing with Vettel. Button wins, MAssa second Alonso third, Button still in contention for the title … :-D:-D

    1. Does not sound too bad.
      What about Webber finally getting his start right, and then sliding into the back of Vettel at the first corner?

      1. Lets hope we don’t have a HAM/MAS, MAS/HAM incident.

        Button leading the first lap would be interesting and then a nice fight between Hamilton and Vettel (before a Vettel DNF) well we can dream can’t we?

    2. Rib khalifa (@)
      8th October 2011, 8:06

      Is this what you wish for in the race?

  9. brilliant drive from vettel but what a shame to see so much cars staying in the garage one more time in Q3

    stupid rules give stupid behavior !!

    1. @french-frog It is a little disappointing to see so few drivers out on track but you could see how much they were having to nurse the tyres. You don’t get any points for qualifying so it’s all part of the strategy to maximise your potential in the race.

  10. Great results for Massa, Button, Kobayashi and Senna.

    Such a shame that we didn’t get to see what Rosberg could have done but hopefully he will provide for some great action at the back.

  11. Shouldn’t Kobayashi be 7th, given that he started a flying lap?

    1. He went out and back into the pits the same lap, only setting sector times. Renault did the same, only a bit quicker (and Schumacher ended up doing that as well.)

      1. @bascb @andrewtanner I’m pretty sure he was setting a lapped time when he backed off…

        1. @enigma @andrewtanner looks like you are right. I saw on Twitter that Sauber will most probalby start in front of the Renaults and maybe even in front of Michael Schumacher as well!

          1. @BasCB @Enigma The time above says no time set for Kobayashi?

          2. @andrewtanner @bascb He didn’t set a timed lap, but he begun one – which is more than what the Renaults did by not even starting a timed lap. Not sure about Schumacher

          3. @Enigma @BasCB Ah, I see :) Thanks for clearing that up for me.

          4. Why was Kobayashi classified 10th at the end of qualifying, as shown on the screen, and also reproduced here in the qualifying report?

            I understand that it’s not necessarily the official final start order, but this way it looks as though it’s just some kind of “our-best-guess-until-we-consult-the-rulebook” classification (a bit pathetic at this level).

            Or am I missing something?

    2. @enigma I don’t think he did, he came straight into the pits, just wanted to secure some sector times so he could at least have something in the bag if no one else went out.

  12. I wonder again why Renault didn’t set a lap on inters, rules don’t say you’re not allowed to do it. They’d be a row ahead.

    1. They would has to start the race on inters tomorrow

    2. @enigma they would has to start the race on inters tomorrow, if they took your suggestion :D

      1. @pmccarthy_is_a_legend Nope, with wet tyres they’re free to chooce. Just like in Sepang last year, they qualified on inters/wets, but were still allowed to start on dry tyres.

  13. Might be a record, having 7 cars starting without setting a time in Qualifying!

  14. Ooo I was only .065 off the pole time in my prediction! Happy with that, one of my best this year.

  15. Rib khalifa (@)
    8th October 2011, 8:13

    Looks like it was just a schoolboy error from Hamilton, who did not realise that time was running out. “He was falling asleep,”
    A miserable day for the Williams pair, with Barrichello (18th) crashing and Maldonado (21st) pulling off the track with some kind of problem
    Jenson is unlucky to miss pole by nine 1,000ths of a second.

  16. Bruno is blowing my socks and shoes off. He’s been terrific ever since he stepped into that Renault. He’s always been on the pace or there about which is impressive as he hasn’t done much racing or even testing of late particularly in F1 and he only had that dog of a car last year. I think he’s doing a splendid job. I always liked him -I don’t think it was because of the name but maybe I was swayed by it- and I’m very pleased for him. I remember when he tested for Honda and was so close to that race seat but that went to pot and I really worried he wouldn’t get a shot to prove himself but he’s really grabbing this opportunity with both hands. I know he’s only against Petrov who didn’t exactly set the world on fire last year but I do think that Vitaly has potential and has improved on last year and Nick may have been very poor this year but few drivers have beaten Heidfeld over the years so he had to be doing something right.

    It was odd how STR slipped back. I have no idea whether it was intentional to save tyres but I suspect they’ll have a stronger day tomorrow.

    I hope Perez and Paul feel better soon too!

    1. I’m happy for Senna as well, glad he got the chance. He’s impressive, given how many years he wasn’t allowed to race when others did karting. I hope he gets to stay at Renault in 2012, or at least get a decent seat in a midfield team.

      I don’t think Toro Rossos have really disappointed that much, to be honest – they haven’t shone in qualifying all season. They’ve only managed Q3 thrice, and two times it was just taking advantage of crazy saturdays. I still expect them to get some points.

      As for Checo and Paul, I haven’t heard anything – are they ill or something?

  17. When I look at the grid on here it is really depressing to see all the “no times” underneath the names. That’s not what I want from qualifying.

  18. Wow, my head was fixed on 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, I completely forgot to look at 4th, 5th and 6th! Massa alongside his best mate Hamilton and also ahead of Alonso and Webber!

    Webber being that far down is IMO because of 2 things, the squabble and not aligning his car properly to get the speed on the out-lap, and his race engineer was talking about the KERS using 40%. So was his KERS not working once again?

    Being a Hamilton fan and what Massa has said and fallen out with him, I have to congratulate Felipe in what he has achieved here, even though I don’t like him at this current moment lol :p

    Hamilton’s tyres are a few laps older than those around him as we were told by Ted Kravitz the first run in Q3 were scrubbed options for most runners, so I expect him to be first into the pits, if he is still running that far into the race (I hope!)

  19. Could somebody point out to me why Petrov actually starts behind Senna even though he had the faster time coming into Q3…

    1. I think it is decided by their car number. And because Petrov was far behind Kubica in last years championship, Senna now has the lowest number of the two. Meaning he starts in front.
      But it does seem a bit mental to me that their Q2 ranking don’t go through to Q3 to decide which driver starts where among the ones who didn’t set a time, of cause.

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