Kimi Räikkönen & Sebastian Vettel

Kimi Räikkönen & Sebastian Vettel

sunnuntai 1. marraskuuta 2015

Mexico GP / Qualifying: Rosberg on pole for fourth straight event!

This weekend the Formula 1 circus returned to Mexico after 23 years! The redevelopped Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez is hosting the 17th race of the season. Qualifying started with a 30 % chance of rain. McLaren´s Button was unable to participate in the qualifying after the team were unable to resolve an engine signal problem on his car from FP3. Kimi had also faced an engine issue in the last free practice session and the Iceman could complete only 15 minutes of running. It also took plenty of time to get the car back into the pits after the session but luckily the mechanics had been able to fix the problem by the start of the qualifying session. The car had needed a gear box change, which meant a 5-place grid penalty for the Iceman for the race.

In Q1 the teams had different tyre strategies. Mercedes and Williams made their first runs on the white-marked medium tyres whilst Ferrari came out on the soft tyres not until halfway through the opening segment. Red Bull opted for soft tyres as well. Rosberg was the fastest man on the track in spite of running on the mediums only. Sebastian was second on the softs and Hamilton third on the mediums as well. Kimi´s problems continued in the qualifying. The Iceman reported on the team radio that he was having problems with the brakes and the Finn was unable to make it higher than P13 in the first session. Alonso was the first faller in Q1 followed by Sauber´s Nasr and the Marussia duo Rossi and Stevens.

Kimi´s difficulties continued when Q2 got underway. Kimi came out on the medium tyres but his lap times were everything but competitive. Kimi drove a few laps but had to settle for P15 at the end. That was utterly frustrating as Kimi will drop 5 grid places due to the gear box change. And Sebastian´s pace showed that Ferrari really had the performance to fight for the second row starting positions! There´s no such thing as bad luck in Formula 1 but lately every time there have been difficulties in the SF15-Ts they have always been in Kimi´s car... I really hope these setbacks will go away and Kimi will have a staggering end to the season! Sebastian came out at the end of the session and immediately jumped second. The end of Q2 saw spits of rain but luckily they didn´t make the track conditions worse. This time Hamilton was topping the time sheets with Sebastian second and Rosberg third. I was also happy for Verstappen, who could improve his lap time on his last flying lap and make it among the top ten. His team-mate Sainz on the other hand was the first man to be knocked out of the last segment. The Lotus duo Grosjean and Maldonado were also out, so was Sauber´s Ericsson and unfortunately also Kimi.

In Q3 Toro Rosso´s Verstappen and Red Bull´s Ricciardo made their first runs on the used set of soft tyres whilst all their rivals opted for a fresh set of option tyres. This time Rosberg aced his partner on both of their opening laps. However, there was only one tenth of a second separating the Mercedes duo. The track conditions were changing under the darkening sky. A closely-fought Q3 session saw Sebastian take third, four-tenths off Rosberg. The Force Indias of Hulkenberg and crowd idol Perez made only one run at the end of the session. There were no improvements on the lap times on the second runs so the top ten remained unchanged. Red Bull seemed quite competitive as well with Kvyat qualifying 4th and Ricciardo 5th. There was only one-thousandth of a second separating the Red Bull duo! However, the Red Bulls were half a second off Sebastian´s pace. The Williams duo Bottas and Massa qualified 6th and 7th, Verstappen 8th and Force India duo Perez and Hulkenberg 9th and 10th respectively.

The surface of the track is still quite slippery so I´m sure we´re going to see some mistakes in the race. Hopefully it will be an eventful one! The atmosphere at the circuit seems absolutely amazing as there´re tens of thousands of fans cheering especially for Perez, who is their home hero. There´ll be a tight battle between the Mercedes team-mates into turn 1... Hopefully Sebastian will benefit from the battle of the Mercedes drivers ;) Who knows how the weather will turn out when the lights go out. On damp track Red Bull could be dangerously competitive. In the dry I think no-one will be able to challenge Mercedes if there´re no mistakes or technical issues. Sebastian has scored podiums in all of the last five races -including victory in Singapore. I strongly believe there´s sixth one on the way! ;) In terms of Kimi I don´t have any other expectations except that he´ll exceed all my expectations ;) Go Sebastian! Go Kimi! Forza Ferrari!

Ei kommentteja:

Lähetä kommentti