F1 China, FP1 & 2: McLarens Fastest, Failures Mark a Dramatic FP1 & a Calm FP2


What Happens When Cooler Temps Do Nothing for a Ferrari Engine

4:12am EST — It was Mercedes dominance in both sessions in China on Friday, with Jenson Button and then Lewis Hamilton posting fastest laps in the first two practice sessions, respectively.  The first session was as dramatic as teh second was calm, with failures for Ferrari and Toro Rosso.  The Mercedes’ showed increased pace this weekend, as Nico Rosberg again posted faster times than teammate Michael Schumacher and splitting the two McLarens each session.

The first practice session of the 2010 Chinese GP was marked with a spectacular engine failure from Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari early on and a right front upright failure that had both the front wheels flying off Sebastian Buemi’s Toro Rosso, causing red flags with six minutes left in the session.  Despite the left front flying into a spectator area, no one was injured.  According to the official F1 site, “an undiagnosed problem with the suspension’s front right upright – a new design introduced in China – had triggered the incident. When the right upright failed, the resulting increase in load is thought to have caused the left upright to fail. The wheel tethers, which are attached to the uprights, were thus unable to do their job.”

Jenson Button had set the fastest time earlier in the session, fighting with teammate Lewis Hamilton over the honor of first blood in China, but a late fast lap after Buemi’s incident by Nico Rosberg split the two.  Teamma Michael Schumacher also moved up on the timesheets into fourth.  Sebastian Vettel was fifth fastest.  Alonso had not posted a timed lap before his Bahrain practice engine let go, despite assurances from Ferrari that the cooler temperatures in China would keep the overheating in the desert engine fine.  Felipe Massa continued the Ferrari tend of mid-field Friday times in tenth, while Mark Webber was eighth fastest.

FP1 Times:

Driver Time Gap Laps
1. Jenson Button 1:36.677 15
2. Nico Rosberg 1:36.748 +.071 17
3. Lewis Hamilton 1:36.775 +.098 19
4. Michael Schumacher 1:37.509 +.832 14
5. Sebastian Vettel 1:37.601 +.924 20
6. Robert Kubica 1:37.716 +1.039 17
7. Vitaly Petrov 1:37.745 +1.068 25
8. Mark Webber 1:37.980 +1.303 17
9. Adrian Sutil 1:38.008 +1.331 13
10. Felipe Massa 1:38.098 +1.421 19
11. Jaime Alguersuari 1:38.161 +1.484 19
12. Kamui Kobayashi 1:38.375 +1.698 21
13. Pedro de la Rosa 1:38.421 +1.744 19
14. Nico Hullkenberg 1:38.569 +1.892 20
15. Paul di Resta 1:38.618 +1.941 26
16. Rubens Barrichello 1:38.678 +2.001 17
17. Sebastian Buemi 1:39.939 +3.262 5
18. Jarno Trulli 1:41.531 +4.854 22
19. Heikki Kovalainen 1:41.779 +5.102 23
20. Timo Glock 1:41.830 +5.153 20
21. Lucas di Grassi 1:42.181 +5.504 27
22. Bruno Senna 1:43.875 +7.198 23
23. Karun Chandhook 1:43.949 +7.272 20
24. Fernando Alonso N/A N/A 6

The second practice in China was not so dramatic, with Hamilton usurping teammate Button for the fastest spot.  Mercedes engines continued their dominance of the, as yet, short weekend, with Rosberg again second fastest and Schumacher fourth.  The Red Bulls were again just behind, with Vettel fifth and Webber sixth fastest.  Alonso frantically lapped, but was only tenth fastest, though .3s faster than Massa, with the Ferrari’s tenth and eleventh fastest, respectively.  The relatively undramatic session saw Heikki Kovalainen’s Lotus lose power with just a few minutes left. Qualifying will begin twenty-fours hours after the second practice session began, with, as usual, the third practice session three hours before.  As is usual, the practice times are interesting but ultimately not terribly informative.  Most of the teams suggested they were bringing various aero updates to China, so these practices have all the value of the winter testing.  That is to say, not a whole lot.

FP2 Times:

Driver Time Gap Laps
1. Lewis Hamilton 1:35. 26
2. Nico Rosberg 1:35. +.248 22
3. Jenson Button 1:35. +.376 26
4. Michael Schumacher 1:35. +.385 28
5. Sebastian Vettel 1:35. +.574 30
6. Mark Webber 1:35. +.778 29
7. Adrian Sutil 1:36. +1.037 31
8. Jaime Alguersuari 1:36. +1.160 43
9. Robert Kubica 1:36. +1.172 29
10. Fernando Alonso 1:36. +1.387 33
11. Felipe Massa 1:36. +1.727 36
12. Vitaly Petrov 1:36. +1.769 27
13. Pedro de la Rosa 1:37. +2.204 32
14. Kamui Kobayashi 1:37. +2.214 33
15. Rubens Barrichello 1:37. +2.440 30
16. Tonio Liuzzi 1:37. +2.587 31
17. Nico Hulkenberg 1:37. +2.650 29
18. Jarno Trulli 1:39. +4.407 35
19. Heikki Kovalainen 1:39. +4.730 30
20. Timo Glock 1:40. +5.016 27
21. Karun Chandhook 1:41. +5.791 32
22. Lucas di Grassi 1:41. +5.890 28
23. Bruno Senna 1:41. +6.128 32
24. Sebastian Buemi N/A N/A

0

Advertisements

Leave a comment

No comments yet.

Comments RSS TrackBack Identifier URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s