Sebastian Vettel will start the 2015 Singapore Grand Prix on pole after he qualified half a second quicker than the rest of the field.
Vettel’s 1:43.885 was too much to ask for his former team-mate Daniel Ricciardo who qualified second, ahead of the second Ferrari of Kimi Räikkönen who was a total of 0.782 seconds behind Vettel.
Daniil Kvyat finished in fourth position after occupying the top spot multiple times throughout the qualifying session, although wasn’t able to take advantage of the upper hand he had over his Red Bull Racing teammate Ricciardo.
Kvyat topped the first section of qualifying comfortably by four tenths of a second over Hamilton, who had to join fellow Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg in making the switch to super softs with five minutes left in Q1.
At the start of Q3, both Red Bull Racing and Ferrari chose to run on brand new sets of super softs while the rest of the field were on a used set. This proved a smart choice as both teams locked out the front two rows.
Mercedes continued to struggle with their pace, as Lewis Hamilton could only manage fifth position and a massive 1.4 seconds off Vettel’s best time. Nico Rosberg also had a qualifying to forget as he was a further 1.2 tenths of a second off his teammate in sixth.
Pastor Maldonado joined both Manors and Sauber drivers in the knockout zone, as Jenson Button knocked down Felipe Nasr by seven-tenths of a second in the final parts of Q1.
Romain Grosjean made it into Q3 while his team-mate Maldonado was eliminated in the first section of Qualifying.
Carlos Sainz was unable to capitalise on the new update Toro Rosso brought to Singapore, as he got too greedy on the exit of Turn 19 and slammed the left rear into the barrier, bending the STR10 out of shape and out of qualifying.
Also knocked out in Q2 was Nico Hülkenberg, Fernando Alonso and Sergio Pérez, who was compromised by the yellow sector brought out by Sainz.
|2015 Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix – Qualifying Results|
|Pos||Q3 Qualifiers||Team / Entry||Time||Gap||Laps|
|1.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T||1:43.885||14|
|2.||Daniel Ricciardo||Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB11||1:44.428||+ 0.543||17|
|3.||Kimi Räikkönen||Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T||1:44.667||+ 0.782||17|
|4.||Daniil Kvyat||Infiniti Red Bull Racing Renault RB11||1:44.745||+ 0.860||15|
|5.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W06 Hybrid||1:45.300||+ 1.415||16|
|6.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W06 Hybrid||1:45.415||+ 1.530||17|
|7.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW37||1:45.676||+ 1.791||20|
|8.||Max Verstappen||Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR10||1:45.798||+ 1.913||16|
|9.||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW37||1:46.077||+ 2.192||19|
|10.||Romain Grosjean||Lotus F1 Team Mercedes E23 Hybrid||1:46.413||+ 2.528||18|
|Pos||Q2 Qualifiers||Team / Entry||Time||Gap*||Laps|
|11.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM08B||1:46.305||+ 1.562||12|
|12.||Fernando Alonso||McLaren Honda MP4-30||1:46.328||+ 1.585||12|
|13.||Sergio Pérez||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM08B||1:46.385||+ 1.642||13|
|14.||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR10||1:46.894||+ 2.151||13|
|15.||Jenson Button||McLaren Honda MP4-30||1:47.017||+ 2.274||12|
|Pos||Q1 Qualifiers||Team / Entry||Time||Gap**||Laps|
|16.||Felipe Nasr||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C34||1:46.965||+ 1.625||8|
|17.||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C34||1:47.088||+ 1.748||6|
|18.||Pastor Maldonado||Lotus F1 Team Mercedes E23 Hybrid||1:47.323||+ 1.983||6|
|19.||Will Stevens||Manor Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03B||1:51.021||+ 5.681||8|
|20.||Alexander Rossi||Manor Marussia F1 Team Ferrari MR03B||1:51.523||+ 6.183||8|
* Denotes gap to fastest Q2 time of 1:44.743 posted by Sebastian Vettel
** Denotes gap to fastest Q1 time of 1:45.340 posted by Daniil Kvyat
^ Post-qualifying penalties:
- Will Stevens – who originally qualified 19th-fastest – will serve a 5-place grid penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change.
- Alexander Rossi – who originally qualified 20th-fastest – will serve a 5-place grid penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change.
Image via XBP Images