Sebastian Vettel has led an Infiniti Red Bull Racing front row lockout for the Formula 1 Italian Grand Prix, the 50th pole position for the outfit owned by the Austrian energy drink company.
Vettel’s dominance of season 2013 continued in a fascinating qualifying session that saw Nico Hulkenberg in the Ferrari-engined Sauber outpace the factory scarlet machines on home soil.
Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo put in a sterling effort to make qualifying 3 with his Scuderia Toro Rosso team-mate, Jean-Eric Vergne. Ricciardo ran wide on one of the chicanes during his Q3 run, he will start seventh behind Nico Rosberg. Sergio Perez, Jenson Button and Vergne rounded out the top 10.
Vergne ran wide during his quick lap coming out of the Parabolica, throwing up a stream of dust in front of the close following Webber (who had been one tenth up at the second sector mark).
The big stories surrounded both Ferrari and Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1. Ferrari had sent Felipe Massa out with Championship aspirant, Fernando Alonso behind with the view of Alonso being able to secure a tow from Massa down the straights.
Massa skipped ahead in the final runs of Q3 to the point where Alonso could derive no benefit from his Brazilian team-mate. The Ferrari team were quick to shut down journalists from entering the garage after the chequered flag flew. They will start the race from fourth (Massa) and fifth (Alonso).
Hamilton failed to make the final segment of qualifying for the first time in 67 races, the longest run of Q3 appearances since this form of qualifying was introduced. It also ended his run of four consecutive pole positions in season 2013.
He ran wide on the exit of the Parabolica approaching his quick run in the second segment of qualifying and ruining his good tyres. A visit to the pits did nothing but position Hamilton into a group of traffic. Adrian Sutil was being investigated by officials post qualifying for potentially holding up a disgusted Hamilton who will start from 12th on the grid.
Neither of the Lotus F1 Team machines made it into the final segment, placing a serious dent into Kimi Raikkonen’s attempts at getting his 2013 Championship back on track.
|1||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull-Renault||1:23.755s|
|2||Mark Webber||Red Bull-Renault||1:23.968|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||1:24.209|
|10||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||1:28.050|
|14||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||1:24.932|
|16||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1:25.077|
|19||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham-Renault||1:26.406|