German Sebastian Vettel grabbed the fourth pole position of his career on Saturday when he survived a powerful challenge from his Red Bull teammate Australian Mark Webber in qualifying for the British Grand Prix. The 21-year-old tyro clocked a best time of one minute and 19.509 seconds in the top-ten shootout.
This lifted him clear of veteran Brazilian Rubens Barrichello in a Brawn GP car who took second ahead of Webber, who pushed hard to seize his first career pole.
Championship leader, Jenson Button was sixth fastest after struggling for balance and tyre performance in the cold conditions. Italian Jarno Trulli was fourth for Toyota and Japanese Kazuki Nakajima was fifth for Williams. The air temperature was only 16 degrees Celsius and the track temperature just 25 degrees, conditions that were not warm enough to allow the Brawn GP cars to get their tyres up to a good working temperature.
‘FIA has until July for peace deal’
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh says any peace deal with F1’s governing body must be reached before the end of July. McLaren and the other Formula One Teams Association members entered into a second day of planning for a breakaway championship after talks with the FIA over entry for 2010 broke down.
While FIA president Max Mosley is confident of a resolution, Whitmarsh said “Whatever separates us today will be greater by then.”