Hamilton beats Maldonado to Singapore pole

Hamilton beats Maldonado to Singapore pole

22 September 2012 – Lewis Hamilton has picked up pole position for Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix, which he will start alongside Williams’ Pastor Maldonado. After topping all three practice sessions, Sebastian Vettel could manage no more than third ahead of Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso. Kimi Räikkönen mustered only 12th position.

As it often the case in Formula 1, dramatic forecasts for rain came to nothing as the street circuit remained very much dry when qualifying began at nine o’clock. There were smiles in the paddock following the confirmation from Bernie Ecclestone that Singapore will be staying on the calendar until at least 2017.

There were a few surprises in Q1. Not only did Vitaly Petrov and Narain Karthikeyan out-qualify their respective team-mates at Caterham and HRT, but Sauber’s tough weekend continued. After suffering chronic oversteer, Kamui Kobayashi was helpless to avoid his first early bath of 2012 as he sat in the garage while the two Toro Rosso drivers improved.

The most car damage was picked up in Q2. Romain Grosjean - back from his ban - spun into the wall at Turn 14 and was fortunate to continue in the session, let alone out-qualify Kimi Räikkönen to become the only Lotus representative in the top ten shootout. The impact suffered by Bruno Senna was somewhat more substantial, as the Brazilian’s right-rear suspension was destroyed again the retaining wall of Turn 21; this cemented the Williams into 17th place, behind Sergio Pérez and the pair of Toro Rossos.

As Räikkönen struggled his way to 12th, Felipe Massa was 13th with Nico Hülkenberg extremely disappointed to finish 11th after losing tyre and brake temperatures when he was instructed to let cars past. The German’s dissatisfaction was highlighted by the facts that team-mate Paul di Resta was capable of sixth position and that Hülkenberg had been the quicker of the duo in final practice this evening.

In the shootout, Mercedes sent their drivers out for a single lap. As both Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg elected not to post a lap time - to line up ninth and tenth – they are able to choose their tyre compound for the start. Ahead of them will be the aforementioned di Resta, Mark Webber and Grosjean who was fortunate to avoid a touch with the wall at the start of the Esplanade Bridge.

Championship leader Alonso will set off from fifth place, perhaps privileged to be ahead of one Red Bull on this high-downforce track, whereas Jenson Button is on the back half of Row 2. Somewhat mystified by his lack of pace at the end of Q3, Vettel could not convert his practice speed into a second consecutive Marina Bay pole, confirming that Hamilton had been carrying more fuel on Friday. Maldonado was delighted with a second front row start of the year and is now aiming to score his first points since winning the Spanish Grand Prix.

Pole is Hamilton’s second in Singapore, his fifth of 2012 and third from the last four races. His 24th overall, the Englishman has now equalled the sums of triple World Champions Niki Lauda and Nélson Piquet. Heading into Sunday, he sits 37 points behind Alonso.


Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix begins at 8pm local time (BST +7) and can also be followed through the interactive GPUpdate.net Live Report

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Saturday 25 October 2014

  2. Marussia also set to miss United States GP 10:48

    Marussia also set to miss United States GP

    Marussia is set to join Caterham in missing next weekend's United States Grand Prix after Formula 1 supremo Bernie...

    F1
  3. Ricciardo: Austin best of the new circuits 10:21

    Ricciardo: Austin best of the new circuits

    Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo believes that the Circuit of the Americas, the venue for next weekend's United States Grand...

    F1
  4. 08:02

    Latest MotoGP photos: Saturday at Sepang

    MotoGP
  5. Márquez storms to 13th pole in Malaysia 07:59

    Márquez storms to 13th pole in Malaysia

    World Champion Marc Márquez set the fastest ever MotoGP lap of Sepang as he stormed to a record-breaking 13th pole position...

    MotoGP
  6. Video of the Day: Button on road safety 05:12

    Video of the Day: Button on road safety

    McLaren driver Jenson Button lists the components necessary to be safe on the road.

    F1
  7. Friday 24 October 2014

  8. Caterham F1 set to miss next two races 18:01

    Caterham F1 set to miss next two races

    Caterham looks set to skip the next two Formula 1 races after Bernie Ecclestone gave the squad special dispensation for the...

    F1
  9. Video: Behind the scenes at Force India 16:34

    Video: Behind the scenes at Force India

    Take a closer look at the inner workings of Force India's factory at Silverstone in this behind the scenes video, featuring...

    F1
  10. 15:59

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  11. Grosjean 'very close' to new Lotus deal 15:57

    Grosjean 'very close' to new Lotus deal

    Lotus is just "a few details" away from signing a fresh agreement with Romain Grosjean, according to Deputy Team Principal...

    F1
  12. Caterham handed over to administrators 12:10

    Caterham handed over to administrators

    The Caterham Formula 1 team's management has decided to step back and hand over to administrators, in the wake of a public...

    F1
  13. Video: Mercedes duo in engineering race 09:41

    Video: Mercedes duo in engineering race

    Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg take part in a different kind of battle.

    F1
  14. 09:39

    Latest MotoGP photos: Friday at Sepang

    MotoGP
  15. Pedrosa tops first day at Sepang 09:38

    Pedrosa tops first day at Sepang

    Dani Pedrosa set the standard on the first day of practice for the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang. The Repsol Honda rider...

    MotoGP
  16. F3 champion Ocon completes Lotus test 07:28

    F3 champion Ocon completes Lotus test

    Formula 3 champion Esteban Ocon has completed his maiden Formula 1 test with Lotus after receiving two days of running in...

    F1
  17. Video of the Day: Pedrosa's Sepang highlight 05:03

    Video of the Day: Pedrosa's Sepang highlight

    Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa picks his fondest Malaysian Grand Prix memory ahead of this year's event.

    MotoGP
  18. Nissany hails 'amazing' F1 test debut 04:16

    Nissany hails 'amazing' F1 test debut

    Roy Nissany described his first experience of Formula 1 machinery as "amazing" after enjoying a day of testing with the...

    F1
  19. Thursday 23 October 2014

  20. Caterham buyer refutes Fernandes claims 19:39

    Caterham buyer refutes Fernandes claims

    Caterham buyer Engavest "strongly refutes allegations" made by Tony Fernandes and Caterham Group CEO Graham Macdonald,...

    F1
  21. Fernandes blames Caterham F1 buyer 15:58

    Fernandes blames Caterham F1 buyer

    Tony Fernandes says the Caterham F1 team's buyer is fully responsible for the ongoing problems at Leafield, claiming that it...

    F1
  22. Ramon Aurin to be Pedrosa's new crew chief 15:00

    Ramon Aurin to be Pedrosa's new crew chief

    Ramon Aurin will replace Mike Leitner as Dani Pedrosa's Race Engineer next season. The Repsol Honda rider confirmed...

    MotoGP
  23. Buyer says Fernandes still owns Caterham F1 13:21

    Buyer says Fernandes still owns Caterham F1

    The consortium that purchased Caterham F1 at the end of June has insisted that Tony Fernandes did not transfer the relevant...

    F1
  24. Caterham F1 staff locked out of factory 11:54

    Caterham F1 staff locked out of factory

    Further doubt has been cast over Caterham's ability to contest the remainder of the 2014 Formula 1 season after staff...

    F1
  25. MotoGP reveals 25-bike entry list for 2015 10:55

    MotoGP reveals 25-bike entry list for 2015

    The International Motorcycling Federation (FIM) has published a provisional entry list for the 2015 MotoGP season, with the...

    MotoGP
  26. Fong completes first F1 test in Valencia 10:13

    Fong completes first F1 test in Valencia

    Adderly Fong completed his maiden Formula 1 test on Wednesday, getting behind the wheel of Sauber's two-year-old C31 in...

    F1
  27. Massa on Austin Fans' Forum line-up 09:43

    Massa on Austin Fans' Forum line-up

    Felipe Massa, Sergio Pérez and Esteban Gutiérrez have been confirmed on the line-up for the upcoming Austin Fans' F...

    F1
  28. Video of the Day: Racing without a driver 05:08

    Video of the Day: Racing without a driver

    A driverless Audi RS 7 was recently sent out to tackle the Hockenheim circuit. Find out how it fared.

    Misc
  29. Félix da Costa to make FE debut in Malaysia 04:47

    Félix da Costa to make FE debut in Malaysia

    Amlin Aguri has confirmed that António Félix da Costa will partner Katherine Legge for the second round of the Formula E s...

    Formula E
  30. Wednesday 22 October 2014

  31. Caterham F1 bosses threaten to quit 19:37

    Caterham F1 bosses threaten to quit

    Caterham's new bosses have warned that they could be forced to step away from the F1 team, claiming that Tony Fernandes...

    F1
  32. Haas: First five years revolve around survival 17:06

    Haas: First five years revolve around survival

    Gene Haas is under no illusions about the task his Formula 1 team faces when it joins the grid, stating that he will be...

    F1
  33. Background: The Toro Rosso candidates 15:57

    Background: The Toro Rosso candidates

    New Toro Rosso recruit Max Verstappen will become the youngest driver in F1 history when he takes to the grid aged 17 next...

    F1
  34. Video: Hamilton's Stars & Cars invitation 15:12

    Video: Hamilton's Stars & Cars invitation

    Mercedes-Benz will stage the once annual 'Stars & Cars' event at its Stuttgart museum on November 29. Lewis Hamilton, who...

    F1
  35. Sam Michael set to leave McLaren 13:15

    Sam Michael set to leave McLaren

    McLaren Sporting Director Sam Michael is to leave the team at the end of the season. A McLaren spokesperson has confirmed...

    F1
  36. Lotus expects to keep Grosjean for 2015 11:12

    Lotus expects to keep Grosjean for 2015

    Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez says he expects to retain Romain Grosjean for the 2015 season, despite admitting that the...

    F1
  37. 09:43

    Photos: Márquez, Pedrosa visit Indonesia

    MotoGP
  38. Pérez on brink of new Force India deal 09:34

    Pérez on brink of new Force India deal

    Sergio Pérez says he is likely to sign a fresh Force India deal "in the next week", a move that would complete the outfit's...

    F1
  39. Video of the Day: Wolff on F1 title success 05:15

    Video of the Day: Wolff on F1 title success

    Mercedes boss Toto Wolff discusses the brand's maiden Formula 1 Constructors' success.

    F1
  40. Tuesday 21 October 2014

  41. Silverstone senior executives suspended 13:55

    Silverstone senior executives suspended

    The British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) has taken "a closer role" in the day-to-day running of Silverstone following the...

    F1
  42. Caterham insists team not threatened 12:25

    Caterham insists team not threatened

    Caterham has dismissed media reports suggesting that Caterham Sports Limited (CSL) being placed into administration will...

    F1
  43. Lotus mourns death of Total chief 11:08

    Lotus mourns death of Total chief

    Lotus says it has been left "shocked" and "deeply saddened" by the death of Christophe de Margerie, Chairman and CEO of team...

    F1
  44. Spa to fight Nissan's use of Eau Rouge name 09:50

    Spa to fight Nissan's use of Eau Rouge name

    The Spa-Francorchamps circuit says it will contest an application from car manufacturer Nissan to trademark "Eau...

    F1
  45. Video: Miami welcomes Formula E 09:30

    Video: Miami welcomes Formula E

    Watch as the track layout for the Miami ePrix, scheduled to take place on March 14 next year, is revealed.

    Formula E
more news