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Who's out of order in Abu Dhabi? // Teammates qualify next to each other at Yas Marina

Published by Christine

A little off-road action for Mark Webber
A little off-road action for Mark WebberCredit: Mark Thompson/Getty Images

Qualifying in Abu Dhabi today showed that Yas Marina is one of those circuits that favours the car rather than the driver. The top ten shootout featured five complete teams, with both drivers from each making their way into the final session of qualifying. When the results were done and dusted, teammates found themselves lined up next to each other... all except one.

Top 10 Qualifying Results for Abu Dhabi
PosDriverTeam
1Sebastian VettelRed Bull
2Lewis HamiltonMcLaren
3Jenson ButtonMcLaren
4Mark WebberRed Bull
5Fernando AlonsoFerrari
6Felipe MassaFerrari
7Nico RosbergMercedes
8Michael SchumacherMercedes
9Adrian SutilForce India
10Paul di RestaForce India

The table shows which driver in each team has the upper hand right now, but it also highlights the problem Mark Webber has with keeping up with Sebastian Vettel. We know the German is fast, we know he's a wizard in qualifying, but in a session like this, with a Noah's Ark style line-up, Webber's grid position stands out starkly.

The man himself has some excuses, but he looked glum after the session was over and the BBC grabbed him for an interview.

It's alright but I'm disappointed with my last run. It was just scrappy, we had to communicate a little bit more during the lap than I would have liked, with a few little things we were trying to manage. That was a bit of a pain to prep the lap like that.

But in the end, disappointed with the last lap really. There's certainly more there. Sometimes you see Seb's lap and you think "Wow, you can't do that" but you know, he did a good lap for sure, but I didn't feel I certainly got most out of it when it counted today.

- Mark Webber

It's not the first time that Webber has openly admitted Vettel's pace is something to be admired, but at this point, it's starting to sound as though he knows he is beaten. Compared to last year, Vettel has blown him away. Their qualifying stats:

DriverQualified Ahead 2010Qualified Ahead 2011
Sebastian Vettel1315
Mark Webber63

In 2010, Webber was closer to half as good as his teammate, but this year, it looks like the World Champion is moving further and further away. What on earth is it going to be like in 2012?