R ed Bull dominated qualifying in Australia: Sebastian Vettel got the best starting position for the Australian GP with a new lap record. With a lap time of 1.23.919 minutes, Vettel undercut Michael Schumacher's old lap record from 2004.
Vettel's Australian team-mate Mark Webber completes the front row and was only a tenth of a second slower than Vettel. The Red Bull duo was the fastest team in the entire session: Webber had won the first qualifying segment, Vettel was fastest in the second qualifying.
Vettel takes revenge on Webber
'This is a great result for the team and a kind of revenge for me: Last year Mark took pole position in Germany. Now I'm starting from pole in his home race,' said Vettel, happily . 'In my fast lap it worked perfectly almost everywhere. Only in one corner I almost lost the car. But luckily it was enough in the end.' With regard to the race, Vettel warns above all of the turbulent start: 'Something always happens here in Melbourne. It is good to be on pole and thus on the clean side.'
Behind Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso qualified the Red Bulls in third place. McLaren driver Jenson Button came fourth ahead of Felipe Massa (Ferrari). Nico Rosberg (Mercedes GP) was able to defeat his team mate Michael Schumacher again: Rosberg starts from 6th place, Schumacher from 7th place. The time difference was only half a tenth of a second.
'Although things went a little better in free practice before, you don't have to be disappointed,' commented Schumacher on his qualifying result. 'It's a bit of a shame, the traffic wasn't optimal. In the last session I could certainly have got a little more out of it.' Schumi does not want to overestimate the distance to team mate Rosberg. 'We're talking about half a tenth. But of course I would rather be on the other side.'
Barrichello, Kubica and Sutil in the top ten
The surprise in the second qualifying segment: Williams driver Rubens Barrichello made it into the round of the last ten and ultimately secured a strong eighth place on the grid. Renault driver Robert Kubica and Force India driver Adrian Sutil also made it into the final qualifying, where they did theRanks 9 and 10 took place.
For the first time in the 2010 Formula 1 season, a driver from the big four top teams retired early in qualifying: McLaren-Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton missed the final qualifying shootout with eleventh place. 'That can happen. I was just on the track at the wrong time. Unfortunately, I didn't get any temperature in the tires,' explained the 2008 world champion.
Hülkenberg missed the jump into the top Ten qualifying
Williams driver Nico Hülkenberg retired in the second part of the qualifying in Melbourne. He was missing more than six tenths of a second to make it into the top ten. Even worse: he clearly missed the target of his Brazilian team-mate Rubens Barrichello. 'Above all, he has the advantage in terms of experience. It was turbulent today with a lot of traffic. But maybe he just drove the better lap,' Hülkenberg then looked for reasons. The hoped-for first World Championship points will probably not work in the second race either. 'It will be very difficult. Let's see what the weather will do.' As expected, Virgin driver Timo Glock did not get past the first qualifying stage. With a lap time of 1.29.592 minutes, the Lindenfelser was 3.5 seconds short of the saving 17th place. After all, Glock was almost six tenths of a second faster than his Brazilian team-mate Lucas di Grassi. 'With the problems at the weekend, I'm at least happy that we made it through qualifying without any defects,' explained Timo Glock afterwards.
Glock wants to change gears
By the way, the duel of the cellar children in the first segment was decided by Lotus drivers Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen, followed by Virgin Racing and the HRT F1 team of Bruno Senna and Karun Chandhok. 'It was already clear beforehand that we could not beat Lotus,' said Virgin pilot Glock somewhat resignedly. 'We were never able to test with little weight in free practice. In addition, I always had to drive around with 25 kilos of fuel because we had problems with the fuel supply with only 15 kilos in the tank. That alone costs seven tenths.' Glock didn't know whether he would finish on Sunday: 'It will be difficult. We'll change the gearbox first, which will cost me ten more places on the grid. But that doesn't matter.'