It all came down to the wire in qualifying for the 61-lap Singapore Grand Prix and it was Felipe Massa who put together a stunning lap to claim pole position by over six-tenths from his nearest rival. Massa has been right on the pace all weekend and under the floodlights this evening in Singapore, the Brazilian banged in a 1:44.801s lap to claim his fifth pole position of the season and the 14th of his career.
Lewis Hamilton had a wild ride to join his championship rival on the front row of the grid after errors in the second round of qualifying left the McLaren driver on the bubble. Aborting his first run after running wide at the first turn, Hamilton put in a scruffy second attempt and had to wait as his rivals crossed the line dropping him to tenth position. Hamilton just scraped through into the final round of qualifying, arguably courtesy of his former team-mate and he then put in a solid run to second position on the grid.
Kimi Raikkonen starts third in the second Ferrari but at eight-tenths of a second off Massa, it is clear that the defending champion has yet to get to grips with the handling problems that blighted his weekend so far. BMW Sauber had a strong run with Robert Kubica and Nick Heidfeld lining up fourth and sixth respectively with Heikki Kovalainen splitting the two in the second McLaren Mercedes.
Sebastian Vettel continued to shine for the Toro Rosso Ferrari team as the Italian Grand Prix winner made it easily into the final round of qualifying and then posted the seventh fastest time while team-mate Sebastien Bourdais was left towards the back of the field.
Toyota-powered cars line up in positions eight to 11 with Timo Glock leading the way in his TF108 from the Williams Toyota duo of Nico Rosberg and Kazuki Nakajima. Jarno Trulli just missed out on the top ten but it was a much better day for the Italian veteran after troubles yesterday. For Rosberg, ninth position will be a little disappointing after running fifth and sixth all weekend while it is clear that Williams has opted to put Nakajima on a heavy fuel load from tenth position on the grid.
Jenson Button ran comfortably in the top ten in practice for Honda, but was unable to reproduce the pace in qualifying as he lines up in 12th position ahead of the Red Bull Renault duo of Mark Webber and David Coulthard who both lost practice time ahead of qualifying.
It was a disaster of a day for the Renault team after the promise of practice earlier this evening. Fernando Alonso breezed through to the second round of qualifying only for a fuel pressure problem to halt his R28 on his out lap. Alonso, clearly frustrated, climbed from the car and stalked off and starts 15th.
Source – F1live