Alonso takes pole at Silverstone – 2012 British Grand Prix qualifying Fernando Alonso is on pole for the British Grand Prix, ahead of Mark Webber and Michael Schumacher
Fernando Alonso will start the British Grand Prix from pole position, following a very wet and long qualifying session.
The rain began to fall at the end of the first qualifying session, but became much heavier during Q2. At which point Alonso – who was fastest in final practice – had a big moment, as he skidded in the wet and just narrowly missed hitting the tyre wall.
More and more drivers took to their radios to protest for the session to be stopped, and soon after FIA race director, Charlie Whiting, decided to bring out the red flags. The session didn’t start again for more than an hour.
Qualifying restarted with six minutes left of Q2, with the drivers battling through standing water and traffic. Nico Rosberg went off on his first lap but managed to continue, but Romain Grosjean wasn’t so lucky. He beached his Lotus in the gravel and will now start ninth.
At the end of Q1, Alonso – currently the championship leader and winner at this track last year – was less than five hundredths of a second faster than second-place Mark Webber.
Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel will share the second row of the grid. Felipe Massa will start fifth, ahead of Kimi Raikkonen, Pastor Maldonado and Lewis Hamilton.
Paul di Resta narrowly missed out on getting into Q3, having slowed down for the yellow flags following Grosjean’sÂ spin. He will start from 10th, though, due to Nico Hulkenberg’s five-place penalty for a gearbox change. This means di Resta’s teammate at Force India will start the race from 14th.
The first casualty of the day was Jenson Button, who will start his home Grand Prix from 16th place. He failed to make it out of the first qualifying session, after yellow flags forced him to ease off on his final flying lap.
The yellow flags were out due to Timo Glock, who had spun and was forced to stop on the pit straight. He will still start ahead of the HRTs.
Two drivers went into qualifying with grid penalties following incidents at the European Grand Prix two weeks ago. Kamui Kobayashi has a five-place penalty for colliding with Felipe Massa in Valencia, which means he now starts 17th. While Jean-Eric Vergne has a 10-place grid drop – and a 10,000 Euro fine – for causing a collision with Heikki Kovalainen, which means he starts 23rd.
Charles Pic in the second Marussia failed to meet the 107 per cent requirement, so will only race at the stewards’ discretion. He also has a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change, so will at best start last.
2012 British Grand Prix grid
|2||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1’51.793|
|4||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1’52.199|
|9||Romain Grosjean||Lotus-Renault||No time|
|10||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1’57.009|
|14||Nico Hulkenberg***||Force India-Mercedes||1’54.382|
|21||Pedro de la Rosa||HRT-Cosworth||1’52.742|
107 per cent time: 1’53.718
* Five-place penalty for causing a collision in Valencia
** 10-place penalty for causing a collision in Valencia
*** Five-place penalty for a gearbox change
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