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Monaco 2011 - Qualifying highlights // Pole position in Monte Carlo is up for grabs

Published by Christine

Mark Webber winds his way through the streets of Monte Carlo
Mark Webber winds his way through the streets of Monte CarloCredit: Mark Thompson / Getty

What should have been the most exciting qualifying session of the year turned dramatic for all the wrong reasons when Sergio Pérez suffered a huge accident coming out of the tunnel. The final ten minutes of qualifying saw a lengthy red flag period which muted the attempts to grab pole position from Sebastian Vettel. The Red Bull driver secured his fifth pole start, the team their sixth.

For a quick reminder, or a catchup if you missed any of the action, here's a minute by minute replay via the Factbyte Factbox.

As it happened: 2011 Monaco - Qualifying

  • 12:00

    Hello and welcome to the Factbyte Factbox for Monaco qualifying.

  • 12:01

    It's been a chaotic day so far, with both Nico Rosberg and Tonio Liuzzi crashing out in Free Practice 3. Their mechanics will be hard at work trying to patch up the cars for qualifying.

  • 12:02

    If you're following qualifying today, why not join in the Sidepodcast comments? The fancy dashboard gives you comments, tweets and the FBFB all in one place: https://sidepodcast.com/dashboard

  • 12:02

    Or you can visit the live thread directly, where you should also vote in the poll: https://sidepodcast.com/post/live-monaco-2011-qualifying

  • 12:02

    Which team can get pole position around the principality? Will it be Red Bull again, or can anyone else snatch it from them?

  • 12:06

    If you want a quick roundup of what happened on Thursday in practice, here's 60 seconds worth: https://sidepodcast.com/news/sebastian-vettel-and-fernando-alonso-lead-monaco-free-practice

  • 12:07

    Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso topped the times. This morning, Fernando Alonso was fastest in FP3 as well.

  • 12:11

    Right, let's get you linked up. You may require live timing: http://www.formula1.com/live_timing/live_timing.html

  • 12:14

    Autosport will have their excellent live text here: http://live.autosport.com/commentary.php/id/353 whilst the BBC have streaming and updates here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/9498084.stm

  • 12:16

    So far, Sebastian Vettel has taken four pole positions this season, with Mark Webber taking one.

  • 12:19

    A few qualifying battles to watch out for. Alonso has outqualified Massa every race so far. Same with Kovalainen and Trulli.

  • 12:19

    That is also the case for Rosberg vs Schumacher and Liuzzi vs Karthikeyan - but this weekend ROS and LIU have broken their cars ahead of qualifying.

  • 12:24

    Mark Webber wants to stop his teammates winning streak: "Seb's one of the competitors, obviously Fernando, Lewis and JB have also won here. Seb hasn't yet, it's one of the one's he hasn't won."

  • 12:34

    Ted Kravitz is in the pit lane, and says it is 50/50 whether Rosberg will make it into qualifying.

  • 12:34

    The garage is a hive of activity, but they're not rushing, it's safety first.

  • 12:35

    Meanwhile, at Hispania, there's just one mechanic working on Liuzzi's car - they clearly aren't worried about participating in qualifying.

  • 12:38

    Mike Gascoyne: "Monaco is very soft on tyres, which is why we run the soft and supersoft. This year, with Pirellis, it was a concern we'd get much higher degradation than normal. The softs look pretty good, probably better than we expected. The supersoft was much more of an unknown. We were pleasantly surprised by the performance of the tyre. It had a 1.2 second advantage on the soft tyre."

  • 12:40

    Jarno Trulli: "This morning I was struggling with the grip. Strange, because on Thursday the car was feeling good. If everything goes right, we should be fighting to go through to Q2, but this morning I wasn't very happy."

  • 12:41
    Fastest Session Times
    Free Practice 1S Vettel1:16.619
    Free Practice 2F Alonso1:15.123
    Free Practice 3F Alonso1:14.433
  • 12:46

    TweetTweet from @alex_wurz: Just spoke with some if my friends at mercedes, nico's car will b ready as it looks... Good.

  • 12:47

    Live timing has cleared from FP3, just over ten minutes to go.

  • 12:48

    Martin Whitmarsh: "We've got at least six mobile chicanes out there... it's very difficult to be able to find the open space to qualify comfortably. That's a scary prospect."

  • 12:49

    TweetTweet from @InsideFerrari: This is surely the most exciting Q session of the season. To do a good lap you need talent, a good car and some luck!

  • 12:52

    A BBC segment has David Coulthard and Paul di Resta doing something of a grid walk. They were at the corner to see the truck fire occur earlier in the week.

  • 12:52

    Hurried repairs were made to the tarmac, and it doesn't seem to have been too much of a problem as yet.

  • 12:56

    Weather

    23°C

    Track45°C
    Humidity30%
    Wind speed0.9mps
  • 12:59

    The poll is closed, and 50% went for Ferrari for pole position. 40% for McLaren and just 10% for Red Bull. Interesting!

  • 13:00

    Green flagQualifying session 1 begins.

  • 13:00

    D'Ambrosio and Petrov are the first drivers out of the pitlane.

  • 13:00

    TweetTweet from @autosportlive: Track officials have removed the speed bumps from the run-off at the harbourside chicane after Rosberg launched over them this morning.

  • 13:00

    Schumacher also makes an early start.

  • 13:01

    Rosberg is waiting by his car, helmet on, but he's not climbing in just yet.

  • 13:04

    First lap times in, and Petrov has a 1:18.112 as an early benchmark.

  • 13:04

    If Rosberg does make it out of the pitlane, then he won't be that "big name" out in Q1, meaning teams will have to run an extra set of tyres to make sure they get through.

  • 13:05

    Five minutes gone, and just Rosberg plus two HRT cars still in the garage.

  • 13:05

    Button tops Petrov with a 1:17.059.

  • 13:05

    Button is on the soft tyres - the harder compound of the two.

  • 13:05

    TweetTweet from @HispaniaRacing: Tonio won't take part in Q1. The damage caused by the crash in P3 is impossible to repair in time for Q1. Thanks for your support!

  • 13:07

    Hamilton puts in a 1:16 and Button tops it with a 1:15.9, the times dropping quickly.

  • 13:07

    TweetTweet from @eddstrawF1: Track very busy right now. 21 cars currently on the track. Will be some complaining drivers post-session (not that this is unusual!)

  • 13:08

    Buemi has returned to the pitlane, whilst the three still in the garage are... still in the garage.

  • 13:09

    Vettel pops up to second, but is already improving his time, and goes fastest.

  • 13:09

    Rosberg has left the pitlane, the Mercedes crew doing great work to get the car out on track.

  • 13:09

    Jenson Button goes even faster with a 1:15.397.

  • 13:10

    Towards the back though, the drop zone at the moment features Alguersuari, Buemi, Glock, D'Ambrosio, Rosberg, Karthikeyan and Liuzzi.

  • 13:10
    Recent Lap Times
    M Schumacher
    Lap 2
    1:25.040
    Lap 3
    1:18.112
    Lap 41:17.054
    Lap 51:16.910
  • 13:10

    TweetTweet from @Pirelli_Media: The top runners are all out on the soft tyres. They will be aiming to get through Q1 without using the faster supersofts.

  • 13:11

    Button has returned to the pitlane from P1 at the moment. Hamilton, on a hot lap, navigates past a slow Force India.

  • 13:11

    Nine minutes left of the session.

  • 13:12

    Rosberg's first flying lap goes up to P5 - 1:16.265. Faster even than Michael Schumacher.

  • 13:12

    That drops Heikki Kovalainen into the drop-zone.

  • 13:13

    Hamilton has topped his teammate with a 1:15.207, and has returned to the pitlane.

  • 13:13

    Buemi has bolted on the supersoft tyres already, trying to improve out of the drop-zone.

  • 13:13

    QuoteComment from Nick: Nico was on reds, shu was on yellows though

  • 13:15

    Buemi does manage to improve, up to P7, whilst Adrian Sutil goes P8.

  • 13:15

    Heidfeld is also on supersoft tyres, and posts the 9th fastest time.

  • 13:15

    Drop zone now: Di Resta, Kovalainen, Alguersuari, Glock, D'Ambrosio, and both HRT cars.

  • 13:16

    Liuzzi is understandable, but not sure why Karthikeyan hasn't attempted a lap time.

  • 13:17

    Replays show Alguersuari rounding the corner at Rascasse and knocking a Sauber out of the way.

  • 13:18

    Pérez is up to P7, whilst Schumacher has improved to sixth, but Rosberg has improved to 4th.

  • 13:18

    Less than two minutes to go.

  • 13:18

    Di Resta hauls himself out of the drop zone, but only to P16, which is still close.

  • 13:19

    That drops Trulli down the order. Alguersuari is in the drop zone, but is also in the pits, so he's not going to be able to improve.

  • 13:20

    Chequered flagQualifying session 1 ends.

  • 13:20

    TweetTweet from @HispaniaRacing: We found a problem in the rear suspenssion of Narain's car at the end of P3 and we couldn't fix it for qualifying

  • 13:21
    Qualifying Position
    18Heikki KovalainenLotus
    19Jarno TrulliLotus
    20Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso
    21Timo GlockVirgin
    22Jérôme D'Ambrosio
    Virgin
    23Narain KarthikeyanHRT
    24Tonio LiuzziHRT
  • 13:22

    Terrible performance from Alguersuari, that crash ruining his session. Paul di Resta just managed to scrape through.

  • 13:22

    Pastor Maldonado improved up to P4 right at the end of the session. P4!

  • 13:22

    The 107% time was 1:20.471. All those who set times are within it fine, but the HRTs may struggle.

  • 13:23
    Qualifying Battle
    Toro RossoQualified Ahead
    Jaime Alguersuari1
    Sébastien Buemi5
  • 13:24

    QuoteComment from Mark on HRT: They're just in on the 107% rule by about 2 tenths if they go on P3 times. I'll think they'll be OK.

  • 13:26

    TweetTweet from @tonyfernandes: Close but not close enough. Oh well we beat a torro rosso. 5 hundreds of a second. slowly but surely.

  • 13:27

    Green flagQualifying session 2 begins.

  • 13:27

    Schumacher, Sutil, Rosberg and Buemi all hit the track immediately. None of this waiting around business.

  • 13:28

    Within minutes, all out on track bar Vettel and Alonso.

  • 13:29

    TweetTweet from @Pirelli_Media: Q2 underway. Teams are likely to save the supersoft until last but Michael Schumacher is already on them...

  • 13:30

    Ted News: Jaime Alguersuari has been called up to the stewards.

  • 13:31

    Mark Webber drops the times into the 1:14.996, with Schumacher and Massa behind him.

  • 13:31

    Both McLarens jump ahead of Webber, with Hamilton three tenths faster than Button.

  • 13:33

    QuoteComment from Stuart Taylor: @Factbytefactbox How accurate are the sidepodfolk at predicting pole, in general?

  • 13:33

    We don't always predict pole position, sometimes other things, but so far I'd say our success rate has not been so hot!

  • 13:33

    Just over eight minutes to go and the drop zone features Pérez, Petrov, Sutil, Di Resta, Heidfeld, Buemi and Kobayashi.

  • 13:34

    TweetTweet from @Noelinho: @factbytefactbox Schumacher will park it and Rosberg will take a surprise pole. #f1

  • 13:35

    Vettel just misses out on P1, but the gap to Hamilton is just two thousandth of a second.

  • 13:36

    Neither Renault are into the top ten yet, and Ferrari are also lacking speed. Massa is currently 8th, just in front of two Williams cars.

  • 13:37

    Felipe Massa has cut the chicane twice at the swimming pool.

  • 13:38

    Vitaly Petrov improves to tenth - which gets him through at the moment but it's not likely to last. That drops Maldonado into the bottom seven.

  • 13:38

    The top four - Hamilton, Vettel, Button and Alonso are all in the pits.

  • 13:39

    Nick Heidfeld can't improve on his time and remains 13th - in the drop zone.

  • 13:39

    Just under three minutes remaining.

  • 13:39

    Pérez improves to the top ten, Maldonado moves up to tenth which pushes his teammate Barrichello down and out.

  • 13:40

    Mark Webber is also in the pitlane, currently sixth with Massa just ahead of him - the Ferrari still out on track.

  • 13:41

    Vitaly Petrov is on another hot lap, currently sitting 11th, he's not quicker so far.

  • 13:41

    Heidfeld also needs to improve from 15th.

  • 13:42

    Chequered flagQualifying session 2 ends.

  • 13:42

    Heidfeld couldn't improve on 15th, but he has time for another lap. Petrov came into the pits, without finishing his lap.

  • 13:42

    Everyone else is done, just Heidfeld needs to improve.

  • 13:43

    Pérez finished off his lap, although he is already into the top ten.

  • 13:43

    QuoteComment from RG: Beautiful, Checo's first Q3.

  • 13:44
    Qualifying Position
    11Vitaly PetrovRenault
    12Rubens BarrichelloWilliams
    13Kamui KobayashiSauber
    14Paul di RestaForce India
    15Adrian Sutil
    Force India
    16Nick HeidfeldRenault
    17Sébastien BuemiToro Rosso
  • 13:44

    Maldonado has just scraped through into Q3 again, whilst teammate Barrichello is out in Q2.

  • 13:45

    TweetTweet from @TalkingaboutF1: Fifth time out of six that Di Resta's out qualified Sutil this year. Well done him! #F1

  • 13:47
    Qualifying Battle
    WilliamsQualified Ahead
    Rubens Barrichello3
    Pastor Maldonado3
  • 13:49

    Interview with Narain Karthikeyan: "After the final practice session, they found a lower wishbone bearing that was quite loose. They tried to change that but ran out of time, basically. If you take the times from the morning practice session we are in, but it's up to the stewards I guess."

  • 13:50

    TweetTweet from @autosportlive: Hamilton topped the times, with McLaren looking to present a very strong challenge to end Red Bull's string of poles this afternoon.

  • 13:50

    Green flagQualifying session 3 begins.

  • 13:50

    Schumacher heads out on track again, followed by both Ferrari drivers.

  • 13:51

    Button and Rosberg join in the fun, so that half the field are running.

  • 13:52

    It looks like Vettel and Hamilton are set for just a one lap run. As are Maldonado and Pérez, unless they are not going to bother setting a time.

  • 13:52

    Schumacher finishes off his first lap on the supersoft tyres - a 1:15.020.

  • 13:53

    That's a tenth slower than he was in Q2, not a good start for the Mercedes.

  • 13:53

    Jenson Button drops the times, posting a 1:13.997.

  • 13:54

    Webber slips into second with a 1:14.019.

  • 13:54

    Last year's pole position was Mark Webber with a 1:13.826.

  • 13:54

    Schumacher has returned to the pitlane. Vettel is out on track.

  • 13:54

    Rosberg also heads back to the garage.

  • 13:55

    Vettel goes even faster with a 1:13.556. Hamilton pulls out of the garage now for his first lap.

  • 13:55

    Webber and Alonso in the pitlane, all else out on track.

  • 13:56

    Felipe Massa also returns to the pitlane for a quick stop.

  • 13:57

    Hamilton, on a fast lap, was held up by Felipe Massa coming out of the pitlane.

  • 13:57

    The Ferrari was quickly shown blue flags, but Hamilton waved his frustration at Massa as he flew by.

  • 13:57

    Yellow flagYellow flags.

  • 13:57

    Pérez has crashed - a massive crash.

  • 13:57

    Red flagSession stopped.

  • 13:58

    That's the same place that Rosberg crashed earlier, but the Sauber didn't manage to clear the barrier.

  • 13:59

    The medical car and ambulance are on site as soon as possible.

  • 13:59

    It's almost exactly the same crash as Rosberg's - but did the removal of the speed bumps make the difference?

  • 14:00

    Replays show Pérez bounced off the barrier, and then took his hands off the wheel and up to protect his head as he went into the barriers.

  • 14:03

    World feed showing replays of the crash as the medical personnel do their work.

  • 14:05

    They are working through their set extraction procedure and not in any rush. Sheets up to cover the incident.

  • 14:07

    Replays of Coulthard's accident show that these incidents are all the same. Bumps over the corner, bang into the first barrier and head off out of control.

  • 14:09

    The marshals canopy is moving towards the ambulance, so Pérez has been removed from the car.

  • 14:09

    The car is now being lifted out of the way. The marshals at Monaco exceptional as usual.

  • 14:10

    The right side of the car is heavily damaged, but the tub looks as though it did what it was meant to.

  • 14:11

    Ted News: Sergio is conscious and he's talking.

  • 14:13

    The ambulance pulls away. Let's have a replay of the incident whilst the marshals do their business.

  • 14:13

    Sergio OfflineComing out of the tunnel, Pérez is already offline and heading towards the first impact.

  • 14:14

    Sergio impactHitting the first barrier, wheels already dislodged.

  • 14:14

    Sergio crashA wider angle, just a few seconds later.

  • 14:15

    Sergio accidentHeading sideways towards the barrier, hands on head - bracing for the second impact.

  • 14:16

    Sergio craneThe crane lifts the car up after Sergio is successfully loaded into the ambulance. Significant damage to the chassis.

  • 14:16

    TweetTweet from @autosportlive: A truck is now delivering more tyres to the crash barrier to add extra protection.

  • 14:17

    There is just 2:26 left of the session, if/when it resumes.

  • 14:20

    FIA officials are at the site of the crash, as the barriers are rebuilt. Herbie Blash has a walkie talkie stuck to his ear.

  • 14:21

    Several vehicles are at the scene. The Tecpro barriers are tough to get back into shape so a 4x4 is giving them a bit of a nudge.

  • 14:23

    Tecpro barriersThe red 4x4 tries to nudge the barriers back into position.

  • 14:24

    TweetTweet from @InsideFerrari: Session will be restarted after the repairs. THere will be a five minute notice

  • 14:24

    If the session does begin, Vettel is on provisional pole, just ahead of Button - the pair the only ones with a 1:13.

  • 14:24

    Lewis Hamilton and Pastor Maldonado have not set times yet.

  • 14:25

    Perez's car has arrived back at the pitlane, and is falling to pieces as they lift it off the truck.

  • 14:28

    Race Control: Race will restart at 35 minutes past. That's about eight minutes time.

  • 14:30

    Ted News: Herbie Whiting and Charlie Blash have returned to Race Control, presumably happy with the barriers now. Monisha Kaltenbourn says Sergio did respond to questions and tests that were put to him by the doctors. The side structures on the chassis appear to have done their job, although there was some damage to the nose.

  • 14:33

    Lewis Hamilton is waiting at the end of the pitlane for the session to restart - a long wait for a clear track.

  • 14:35

    Green flagSession restarted.

  • 14:35

    Hamilton leads the pack away. Button behind, and the rest of the field follow.

  • 14:36

    All nine cars out on track, Hamilton trying to warm up his tyres after that long wait at the end of the pitlane.

  • 14:36

    One minute to go.

  • 14:36

    Hamilton begins his one and only flying lap.

  • 14:37

    Button has backed off his lap, allows Rosberg through - who in turn runs wide.

  • 14:37

    Chequered flagQualifying session 3 ends.

  • 14:38

    Hamilton only manages P7, Rosberg remains P8. Alonso gave up on his lap.

  • 14:38

    Webber also returns to the pitlane, Vettel the same. He takes pole position.

  • 14:40
    Qualifying Position
    1Sebastian VettelRed Bull
    2Jenson ButtonMcLaren
    3Mark WebberRed Bull
    4Fernando AlonsoFerrari
    5Michael Schumacher
    Mercedes
    6Felipe MassaFerrari
    7Lewis HamiltonMcLaren
    8Nico RosbergMercedes
    9Pastor MaldonadoWilliams
    10Sergio PérezSauber
  • 14:41
    Qualifying Battle
    McLaren
    Qualified Ahead
    Lewis Hamilton4
    Jenson Button2
  • 14:43

    In other teammate battles - Alonso keeps his 6-0 lead over Massa, as does Kovalainen over Trulli. Meanwhile, Schumacher claws one back on Rosberg.

  • 14:45

    Another anti-climactic end to the session leaves Sebastian Vettel with another pole position, and Lewis Hamilton with a lot of work to do.

  • 14:46

    Button has done a great job to line up second on the grid, and Schumacher improved on his previous qualifying performances.

  • 14:47

    Of course, all our thoughts are with Sergio Pérez, hoping he makes a swift recovery.

  • 14:47

    I hope you will join me tomorrow for the race, the Factbyte Factbox coverage will begin at 12pm GMT+1.

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