Red Bull fastest ahead of Australian GP qualifying

Updated: 26 March 2011 13:12 IST

World champion Sebastian Vettel enters qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix with the fastest practice time after Red Bull dominated Saturday's third session.

Red Bull fastest ahead of Australian GP qualifying

Melbourne:

World champion Sebastian Vettel enters qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix with the fastest practice time after Red Bull dominated Saturday's third session.


Vettel had a time of 1 minute, 24.507 seconds, .857 faster than teammate Mark Webber, to outperform Friday's pacesetter McLaren.

Lewis Hamilton was third quickest in 1:25.553 ahead of McLaren teammate Jenson Button, while Vitaly Petrov was a surprising fifth for Renault.

Ferrari's Fernando Alonso posted the sixth fastest time and Michael Schumacher was 10th in a slower time than his drive on Friday.

Narain Karthikeyan of troubled team Hispania was slowest, more than 17 seconds off the pace, while his teammate Vitantonio Liuzzi failed to complete a lap after losing power in his car almost immediately after leaving the garage.

"I touched the brake and the gearbox went into false neutral, I lost everything," Liuzzi radioed to his team.

With teams now banned from the race if they fail to be within seven percent of the fastest time in the first session of qualifying, Hispania faces a mountainous task to get into Sunday's race.

Rookie driver Pastor Maldonado needed to have his Williams race car craned off the circuit after losing control and ending up spinning his tires in the gravel pit at turn six, while teammate Rubens Barrichello struck mechanical problems.

The Red Bull and McLaren drivers all bettered Button's fastest of Friday, while Alonso was slightly outside his previous best time on the Albert Park circuit in cool, windy and overcast conditions.

Button complained of the traffic on the track as teams scrambled to complete some final laps ahead of qualifying later Saturday.

"The HRT (Hispania) just drove around in the middle of the circuit," Button radioed to his team during the session, followed by; "There's so much traffic out here, it was really difficult to get a lap in."

Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi was seventh quickest, while Nico Rosberg of Mercedes (eighth) and Renault's Nick Heidfeld (ninth) rounded out the top-10.

Ferrari's Felipe Massa was slower than Friday to finish a disappointing 12th.



Topics : Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix
Related Articles
Nico Rosberg Receives Formula One World Championship Trophy, Says 'Mission Accomplished'
Nico Rosberg Receives Formula One World Championship Trophy, Says 'Mission Accomplished'
Nico Rosberg - Master of The Road, And His Mind
Nico Rosberg - Master of The Road, And His Mind
Lewis Hamilton Sad, Not Surprised by Nico Rosberg's Retirement
Lewis Hamilton Sad, Not Surprised by Nico Rosberg's Retirement
Show Comments
Advertisement