14 April 2012

Nico Rosberg on maiden pole for Shanghai GP

Nico Rosberg has outqualified his teammate Michael Schumacher for the first time in 2012, as well as the rest of the field by snatching pole position, a maiden first position for him (after 111 attempts) and also for Mercedes AMG PETRONAS team, a first pole as a works team since Monza 1955 with Juan Manuel Fangio.

Lewis Hamilton in Mclaren was second, some 0.505 seconds slower than Rosberg ultimate 1m 35.121s. Nico's teammate, the legendary Schuey is further 0.065s slower than the Mclaren leading driver. However, due to Lewis penalty incurred by the change of gearbox, Mercedes AMG PETRONAS now filled up the front row of the grid.

The shock of the day however was the reigning champion Sebastian Vettel failure to make it to Q3. He has to settle down with 11th place at the end of Q2. However, Vettel denied that his slow pace is due to the old-spec exhaust that he opted to use instead of switching to the newer item as him team mate Webber who managed to cork out more pace in sister car. Other big names that failed to make it further than Q2 was Felipe Massa although it is hardly surprising judging by how underperforming he has been in the Ferrari ever since 2009.

The Sauber duo continues to impressed in their C31 racer by scoring 4th and 8th, each which will be 3rd (!) and 7th on Sunday starting grid. Ferrari road car might be some of the most legendary car ever, however their F1 machine is just like Perodua Viva among the Proton Preve. Even the mighty Alonso just managed some 1.501s slower than pole sitter.

Full Chinese GP qualifying results after the jump.

Pos Driver Team Time Gap   
 1.  Nico Rosberg          Mercedes             1m35.121s         
 2.  Lewis Hamilton        McLaren-Mercedes     1m35.626s  + 0.505
 3.  Michael Schumacher    Mercedes             1m35.691s  + 0.570
 4.  Kamui Kobayashi       Sauber-Ferrari       1m35.784s  + 0.663
 5.  Kimi Raikkonen        Lotus-Renault        1m35.898s  + 0.777
 6.  Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes     1m36.191s  + 1.070
 7.  Mark Webber           Red Bull-Renault     1m36.290s  + 1.169
 8.  Sergio Perez          Sauber-Ferrari       1m36.524s  + 1.403
 9.  Fernando Alonso       Ferrari              1m36.622s  + 1.501
10.  Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault        No time
11.  Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault     
12.  Felipe Massa          Ferrari              
13.  Pastor Maldonado      Williams-Renault     
14.  Bruno Senna           Williams-Renault     
15.  Paul di Resta         Force India-Mercedes 
16.  Nico Hulkenberg       Force India-Mercedes 
17.  Daniel Ricciardo      Toro Rosso-Ferrari   
18.  Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Ferrari   
19.  Heikki Kovalainen     Caterham-Renault     
20.  Vitaly Petrov         Caterham-Renault     
21.  Timo Glock            Marussia-Cosworth    
22.  Charles Pic           Marussia-Cosworth    
23.  Pedro de la Rosa      HRT-Cosworth         
24.  Narain Karthikeyan    HRT-Cosworth         

No comments: