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Italy 2011 - Qualifying highlights // Lap by lap facts and figures from the Saturday action at Monza

Published by Christine

Liuzzi ducks under the bridge on Saturday in Monza
Liuzzi ducks under the bridge on Saturday in MonzaCredit: Hispania F1 Images

A qualifying that held good promise turned into something of a routine day out, as Sebastian Vettel secured yet another pole position to add to his growing tally. Webber suffered KERS issues, whilst McLaren and Ferrari were quick but just not quite quick enough.

Despite the end result, the first couple of sessions were a fascinating battle between the midfield runners and the backmarkers, as all tried to avoid being knocked out early.

If you missed any of the action or want to relive the three sessions again, here's the Factbyte Factbox highlights from qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix.

As it happened: 2011 Italy - Qualifying

  • 12:30

    Hello there, how are you? This is the Factbyte Factbox for the Italian GP qualifying.

  • 12:31

    So far, it looks to have been gloriously sunny and warm at Monza, which makes a change from the last few damp and cloudy race weekends we have witnessed.

  • 12:31

    Sebastian Vettel has led two of the practice sessions so far, with Lewis Hamilton topping FP1 on Friday.

  • 12:32

    Vettel has good memories of Monza, of course, having taken his debut win in 2008, behind the wheel of a Toro Rosso.

  • 12:33

    Qualifying gets underway in just under half an hour, and if you're watching, make sure you check out the Sidepodcast live comments: https://sidepodcast.com/dashboard

  • 12:35

    QuoteComment from Pamela: Where are the two DRS zones?

    We've got two distinct zones this weekend - the start/finish straight, and between the Lesmo and Ascari chicane.

  • 12:35

    Of course in practice and qualifying, DRS is a free-for-all.

  • 12:36

    Jenson Button has already said: "Qualifying well is important, but going into turn one isn’t as important because we have DRS now." He'll be telling himself that in case McLaren mess up his qualifying again.

  • 12:37
    Fastest Session Times
    Free Practice 1L Hamilton
    1:23.865
    Free Practice 2S Vettel1:24.010
    Free Practice 3S Vettel1:23.170
  • 12:38

    In practice this morning, Daniel Ricciardo had to sacrifice a lot of running due to a broken car - the HRT team were taking it apart in the garage and rebuilding hurriedly to be ready in time for qualifying.

  • 12:39
    2011 Pole Positions
    PosDriverTotal
    1Sebastian Vettel9
    2Mark Webber3
  • 12:43

    After the fun and games at the last race regarding Red Bull and their tyre concerns, the FIA have mandated a camber limit - and it will be measured after qualifying to be sure.

  • 12:44

    TweetTweet from @kateafan: Webber has a new chassis, well when I say new, I mean the one Vettel used for the first 11 races. #F1

  • 12:46

    If you missed any of the practice action yesterday, I have a nice little 60 second round-up for you: https://sidepodcast.com/news/lewis-hamilton-sebastian-vettel-lead-free-practice-monza

  • 12:48

    Lewis Hamilton is feeling the media pressure at the moment - lots of negative press surrounding the Brit, but he is keeping his head up: https://sidepodcast.com/f1-big-picture/easy-target

  • 12:52

    There were some tweaks made to the kerbing at the Roggia chicane overnight after complaints from the drivers. Extra speed bumps have been put in but they've been moved around for safety reasons. Much more here: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/94413

  • 12:54

    Interview with Martin Whitmarsh: "We looked strong yesterday. It was a tough session this morning. I think we're definitely competitive... I think we'll have an exciting qualifying now. We believe we're quick enough to be on the front row, I'd very much like us to be on pole."

  • 12:56

    Weather

    29°C

    Track44°C
    Humidity52%
    Wind speed1.4mps
  • 12:56

    Qualifying is almost upon us. I hope you're settled in nicely with a drink and a snack. Predictions at the ready.

  • 12:57

    Luca di Montezemolo has been appearing in the Ferrari garage over their home race weekend. He keeps jumping on the pitwall and waving at the fans before retreating to the garage again.

  • 12:58

    Ferrari have long been complaining about the colder temperatures affecting their tyre performance. It is warmer today but will it make any difference?

  • 13:00

    Green flagQualifying session 1 begins.

  • 13:00

    Jarno Trulli hits the track straight away.

  • 13:01

    And Heikki joins him. This is a picture from just before qualifying, preparing to go out, via @MyTeamLotus.

  • 13:02

    TedNews: Pastor Maldonado had a KERS practice in FP3 and they've just finished sorting that out. Jenson Button is still fine tuning his setup after being unhappy in practice so far.

  • 13:03

    15 cars are out on track. Jarno Trulli sets the first time - 1:33.967.

  • 13:04

    BBC replays show a Lotus jumping over one of the tricky speed bumps. They do look like the traffic bumps you'll find in the street. Difficult in a low F1 car.

  • 13:04

    Five minutes gone, the times are pouring in. Force India drop the benchmark to 1:28, and Jaime Alguersuari puts in a 1:26.

  • 13:05

    Webber, Schumacher, Rosberg and Maldonado are the only drivers still in the garage.

  • 13:05

    Jenson Button puts in a slightly more realistic time of 1:24.872. Behind him, Di Resta and Sutil.

  • 13:06

    Now it is just Webber in the garage. 23 cars are all out on track battling for a time.

  • 13:06

    Timo Glock becomes the first driver to dive back into the pits.

  • 13:07

    Fernando Alonso puts in a 1:25.000 - lots of zeros. I like that.

  • 13:08

    More TedNews: Red Bull are taking things very easily. nothing wrong with the car but Webber only just getting into it now. I can only think that it's because Webber is the only one of the top guys who hasn't taken a fresh engine this race. Vettel has.

  • 13:08

    Talking of Vettel, he has jumped up to P1 with a 1:24.002. It won't be long before we see a 1:23, I'm sure.

  • 13:08

    Yellow flagYellow flag.

  • 13:09

    Yellow flags waved for Pastor Maldonado who spins coming out of Parabolica. He's bashed into the barrier and lost his front wing.

  • 13:09

    Pastor has not yet set a time.

  • 13:09

    Green flagTrack is clear.

  • 13:10

    Ten minutes left then. The drop zone features Kovalainen, Glock, D'Ambrosio, Liuzzi, Ricciardo, Maldonado and Webber.

  • 13:10

    Webber is now out of the garage and on track, he shouldn't be in the drop zone for long.

  • 13:11

    Lewis Hamilton posts a new fast time - 1:23.976.

  • 13:11

    RadioTeam radio from Maldonado: "When I opened the rear wing at the exit of Parabolica, I lose it immediately."

  • 13:12

    TweetTweet from @F1_Prof: Just watched P Head watch P Maldonado spin. Not amused. Stomped off to garage.

  • 13:12

    Alonso and Massa seem to be a little bit faster than previously - currently 4th and 5th respectively.

  • 13:12

    Webber finally sets his first lap - harder tyres - he moves up to 7th, which drops Trulli into the drop zone. Maldonado may be the "big name" to go out.

  • 13:13

    TweetTweet from @tonyfernandes: Good first session from the boys. Great weather. Jarno driving well. Heikki feels he got more. Better than I thought.

  • 13:14

    The Williams team have done a fab job and Maldonado leaves the garage with just over five minutes to go.

  • 13:15

    The top four drivers have all returned to the garage, they're not likely to come out again - Hamilton, Vettel, Button, Alonso.

  • 13:15

    Webber in fifth is still going round, Massa and Rosberg next are in the garage.

  • 13:16

    The 107% time is sitting at 1:29.854 but all times are comfortable underneath that.

  • 13:17

    Heikki Kovalainen completes a fast lap on the soft tyres, hoping to improve but crosses the line still 19th.

  • 13:17

    Maldonado has improved to 12th place, so that has dropped Bruno Senna into 18th.

  • 13:18

    Senna improves to 15th, which is still close to the line, but that dropped in Barrichello. The Williams then improved to leave Kobayashi in the drop zone.

  • 13:18

    Maldonado, Senna, Kobayashi and Barrichello are all there or thereabouts, it could be any of them.

  • 13:19

    The top eight drivers are now satisfied with their times. Both Force Indias are still out in 9th and 10th, and Schumacher in 11th believes he is safe.

  • 13:19

    Bruno Senna jumps up to 10th, so he is much safer.

  • 13:19

    It's Buemi in the dropzone at the moment, but it still could change.

  • 13:20

    Chequered flagQualifying session 1 ends.

  • 13:20

    QuoteComment from Lukeh: Buemi's in a dangerous position, but then again, Toro Rossos seem to score points when they start 18th

  • 13:21

    Buemi improves, now Barrichello is in trouble, but he's still on a lap.

  • 13:21

    Barrichello jumped up to 14th, so that leaves Alguersuari in the drop zone. He was on a lap, but decided against it and headed to the pitlane.

  • 13:22
    Qualifying Position
    18Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso
    19Jarno TrulliLotus
    20Heikki KovalainenLotus
    21Timo GlockVirgin
    22Jérôme D'AmbrosioVirgin
    23Daniel RicciardoHRT
    24Tonio LiuzziHRT
  • 13:23
    Qualifying Battle
    LotusQualified Ahead
    Jarno Trulli2
    Heikki Kovalainen10
  • 13:26

    Interview with Jarno Trulli: "Eventually, the last lap would have been even better, but I don't mind. I got some traffic. I'm happy because I'm feeling the car now, I have new power steering on, so I can get the best out of myself and the car."

  • 13:27

    More from Jarno: "We have to take into account that this is a brand new team and the setup always takes some time. I'm not the first one who is trying to grab the top of the field and then eventually drop down because something goes wrong with his career. We all know what happened with my last team. It's a challenge to start from the beginning, but I'm still enjoying the challenge..."

  • 13:27

    Green flagQualifying session 2 begins.

  • 13:27

    Pastor Maldonado is the only driver out of the pits at the moment.

  • 13:28

    Rubens Barrichello joins his teammate out on track, the pair of them must both be feeling quite lucky they've got through.

  • 13:30

    Vettel and Button are the first two front runners to head out, with Lewis Hamilton following them onto track.

  • 13:30

    TweetTweet from @tonyfernandes: Don't forget we have no KERS. On this track that's a lot.

  • 13:30

    TweetTweet from @WilliamsF1Team: Pastor out on medium tyre, Rubens out on mediums too

  • 13:31

    Senna sets the first benchmark - 1:24.715.

  • 13:31

    Twelve cars are out on track, both Force India and both Sauber drivers, plus Schumacher remain in the garage.

  • 13:32

    Vettel drops the fastest time to a 1:23.105, with Jenson Button just three tenths behind him.

  • 13:32

    Just under ten minutes of the session remaining.

  • 13:32

    Both Ferrari drivers have bolted on the soft tyres. Rosberg is also on the yellow stripes.

  • 13:33

    Ah, Vettel has dropped the times even further - 1:22.914. First time we've seen a 22 so far this weekend.

  • 13:34

    Schumacher has hit the track, leaving just Force India and Sauber leaving it late.

  • 13:34

    The Williams boys have returned to the garage to prepare for the final stint.

  • 13:35

    Jenson Button is faster than Vettel through the first and second sector, but loses time in the third to cross the line 2nd.

  • 13:35

    Last year's pole position was from Fernando Alonso with a 1:21.962.

  • 13:35

    He's currently sitting fifth with a 1:23.561.

  • 13:36

    He crosses the line after a cautious lap and moves up to 4th.

  • 13:37

    On the opposite end of the spectrum, Sutil appears to be taking as much kerb as he can, but is 11th - not fast enough to get out of the drop zone.

  • 13:37

    The drop zone features Sutil, Buemi, Barrichello and Maldonado, with two Sauber drivers and Paul di Resta without a time yet.

  • 13:38

    The top ten, barring Schumacher in 6th, are all in the pitlane at the moment. Four minutes to go.

  • 13:38

    Pérez puts in his first time, good enough for 13th so far.

  • 13:39

    McLaren were hoping to save a set of soft tyres in this session, but have had to admit that hards aren't doing it for them. Hamilton is out on the yellows.

  • 13:39

    Paul di Resta squeezes into tenth, so now all 17 drivers have a time.

  • 13:40

    Kobayashi is on a lap at the moment. His first was six seconds off the pace, so no doubt he can improve from 17th - but how far?

  • 13:40

    Oh, Kobyaashi did improve his time, but remained 17th. Not so good.

  • 13:41

    TweetTweet from @Tufty_Ilam: @factbytefactbox any idea WHY he was so far down on that lap

    We didn't see it, but six seconds lost can only be running wide or a spin or something. Traffic wouldn't be that bad.

  • 13:41

    Thirty seconds to go.

  • 13:41

    Vettel, Button and Hamilton lead.

  • 13:42

    Chequered flagQualifying session 2 ends.

  • 13:43

    All eyes on Bruno Senna as he jumps up to tenth and pushes Paul di Resta down to the drop zone.

  • 13:44
    Qualifying Position
    11Paul di RestaForce India
    12Adrian SutilForce India
    13Rubens BarrichelloWilliams
    14Pastor MaldonadoWilliams
    15Sergio PérezSauber
    16Sébastien BuemiToro Rosso
    17Kamui KobayashiSauber
  • 13:45

    Paul di Resta was knocked out by just six thousandths of a second. The team inform him over the radio, he will be disappointed.

  • 13:45

    QuoteComment from tim: dang! at least Paul can choose his tyres

  • 13:46
    Field Spread
    PosDriverTime
    1stVettel1:22.914
    17thKobayashi1:25.065
  • 13:47

    Interview with Timo Glock: "I had a problem this morning with the rear wing. The rear wing just flaps up but doesn't come down anymore. We never had this problem on Friday, it's not really comfortable if you brake into turn one with an open rear wing. That was very difficult and very disappointing. We were very close to Kovalainen and with a proper rear wing working, proper DRS function, we could have been close to them."

  • 13:48

    Daniel Ricciardo on beating his teammate this time: "It's a hurdle I've been trying to jump over since I started and it's nice to get one... Spa was more down to me not doing a good performance in qualifying. I was still slower than Tonio in those circumstances. Not a second and a half as it seemed. We didn't get to a qualifying simulation this morning, so I just went for it and managed to pull it all together. Sometimes it just happens."

  • 13:50

    Green flagQualifying session 3 begins.

  • 13:50

    No one at the end of the pitlane waiting to get out. All drivers remain in the garage for now.

  • 13:50

    Who will be first? It's the two Ferrari drives, Massa ahead.

  • 13:51

    Both McLaren drivers and Vettel join in the fun.

  • 13:53

    Five complete teams in the top ten then - Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari, Renault and Mercedes.

  • 13:53

    All bar three drivers out on track now, and Massa is coming round for his first lap time - 1:23.252.

  • 13:53

    Alonso immediately drops it to 1:22.999.

  • 13:54

    Button jumps up to P1, Vettel beats him to it, and Hamilton settles for second.

  • 13:54

    Webber, Schumacher and Senna waiting for just one run.

  • 13:54

    Just over five minutes - half the session - to go.

  • 13:55

    Webber leaves the garage now, as Vettel continues to fly around the circuit, improving on his own time in the second sector. He ran properly wide though, and abandoned the time.

  • 13:57

    Rosberg is on the harder compound of the two, which explains his 1:25 time.

  • 13:58

    Vettel looked like he wanted to pit after that aborted lap but was told over the radio that he couldn't come in as his KERS was too hot. He'd need another lap to cool down.

  • 13:58

    Less than two minutes to go and nine cars are out on track, Senna remains in the garage.

  • 13:59

    Button moves out the way of a flying Mark Webber, who currently sits fifth.

  • 14:00

    Chequered flagQualifying session 3 ends.

  • 14:00

    Lewis Hamilton locks up on his flying lap, which may ruin his chances. Button looks to be on a good lap, faster through the first two sectors.

  • 14:01

    Both McLaren drivers pitted but no-one beat their time. Vettel improved his own time, so gets another pole position.

  • 14:02

    RadioTeam radio to Vettel: "Pole position around Monza. How about that? It's Christmas!"

  • 14:03
    Qualifying Position
    1Sebastian VettelRed Bull
    2Lewis HamiltonMcLaren
    3Jenson ButtonMcLaren
    4Fernando AlonsoFerrari
    5Mark WebberRed Bull
    6Felipe Massa
    Ferrari
    7Vitaly PetrovRenault
    8Michael SchumacherMercedes
    9Nico RosbergMercedes
    10Bruno SennaRenault
  • 14:04
    Qualifying Battle
    MercedesQualified Ahead
    Michael Schumacher2
    Nico Rosberg11
  • 14:04

    Vettel's pole position was half a second faster than Hamilton's earlier laptime.

  • 14:06
    Gap Analysis
    PosDriverGap
    1stVET1:22.275
    2ndHAM+0.450
    3rdBUT+0.502
    4thALO+0.566
    5thWEB+0.697
  • 14:07

    Interview with Christian Horner: "He was really hooked up there today. That's a massive margin, it's completely unexpected. Monza tended to be our bogey circuit. To get pole here, our 13th of the year, is completely beyond our expectations. Unbelievable job by him.

    "After Q2 Mark wanted to do one run, his plan changed as we went into Q3. Probably with hindsight he'd have been better doing two, but based on the information, we decided to go with it."

  • 14:08

    TweetTweet from @MarussiaVirgin: JDA: "I felt comfortable in the car and generally v satisfied. Looking forward to the race - going to be a close one" pic.twitter.com/C10NbhR

  • 14:09

    Interview with Mark Webber: "We were a bit late out, just trying to manage some KERS stuff which worked okay in the end until Q3 when we had a bit of a hiccup. I made a little bit difficult for the team today, I wasn't clear what I wanted to do. It wasn't the best Q3 at all. I didn't choose the best run programme, so I apologise to the engineers. In the end, we're up there, we can still race from there. KERS was intermittent on my last run but should be okay for tomorrow."

  • 14:11

    Press Conference Quotes - Sebastian Vettel: "We thought it would be much closer than that. I had a bit of an improvement in the first run for my second lap. We weren't sure whether the tyres worked best in the first or second lap. I made a bit of a mistake but we stayed out and focused on the last run only. We would not think of going on pole by that big margin today on a track that the last two years didn't suit us. This year the car is very good here, the balance is perfect. On low downforce it's slippery but we're quite quick in all three sectors and managed to get it together. I'm very pleased with today."

  • 14:12

    Press Conference Quotes - Lewis Hamilton: "I didn't have another half a second in the bag. We could have got another couple of tenths out of the car. The guys did a fantastic job bringing new components to the circuit. We're competitive, but Sebastian did a fantastic job, That last lap was untouchable for me."

  • 14:13

    Press Conference Quotes - Jenson Button: "Third is normally a pretty good place to start but here you just can't get past the front two. Looking at today, I agree with Lewis. Even if we got more out of the car, we'd never challenge Seb. These guys don't look like they're carrying a lot of wing but they're half a second quicker than us. Difficult to understand but that's something we're going to have to look at. We've just got to concentrate on tomorrow now, we can both score some good points. It's not so important to be on pole position here because of DRS."

  • 14:17

    Interview with Fernando Alonso: "We didn't find the right balance or the right speed all weekend. Yesterday we struggled with the balance and top speed. Today we're still lacking braking stability and top speed. That's the negative point of the weekend, but the positive is the result. Fourth opens up opportunities for tomorrow. Regarding how the weekend went so far, it's very good news."

  • 14:20

    That brings another Vettel-dominated qualifying to an end. It's a shame McLaren couldn't find any more pace, but it still looks good for tomorrow.

  • 14:20

    Ferrari have decided that having Alonso in fourth is a great qualifying, although last race 4th for Massa was awful.

  • 14:22

    So far it's been sunshine all the way at Monza, but the forecasts do suggest things could cloud over tomorrow.

  • 14:23

    I hope you will be watching, I certainly will be. Join me back here at 12pm GMT+1 for all the build up and all the action!

  • 14:23

    Till then, fact fans.

All content in the series Italy 2011