Crashes for Alguersuari, Glock and Kovalainen halt Japan qualifying (Video)

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Mark Webber crashed at Degner in FP3, and seems to have started a trend

Qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka was red-flagged three times for three different accidents.

Jaime Alguersuari put his Toro Rosso in the barriers at Degner eight minutes into Q2. Then, four minutes after the session had resumed, Timo Glock crashed his Toyota at the final turn.

In Q3 it was Heikki Kovalainen’s turn to hit the wall, spinning off at Degner.

Glock’s accident was the most worrying. The marshals covered the scene with a sheet as he was taken away on a stretcher. He gave a thumbs-up as he was carried away from his car. Early reports from the track suggest he suffered a leg wound described as an ‘abrasion’.

It’s not yet clear if he will be able to race tomorrow. However as he started the qualifying session no-one will be allowed to take his place. Kamui Kobayashi piloted Glock’s car during practice yesterday.

Alguersuari, meanwhile, was taken to hospital for precautionary checks.

All three drivers had never competed at the circuit in F1 before, and like their rivals missed much precious practice time yesterday due to heavy rainfall.

It’s also noticeable that Gliock and Kovalainen are thought likely to lose their seats in 2010, putting them under greater pressure to perform.

Sebastien Buemi, meanwhile, managed to crash twice without bringing out the red flags on either occasion.

Video of Timo Glock’s crash in Q1

Video of Heikki Kovalainen’s crash in Q2

Japanese Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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23 comments on “Crashes for Alguersuari, Glock and Kovalainen halt Japan qualifying (Video)”

  1. Did something break in the rear?

    1. Toyota say there’s no immediate indication of a failure on the car.

      1. But it does look like Glocks left wheel not responding to driver command. Initially it did seem like he misjudged how much lock he need to take that turn.

        1. I think it’s understeer. The angle of his steering and that of other cars are similar, but it seems that Suzuka just takes so much out of the soft tires after just one flying lap, you barely have enough to make it home.

  2. For Glocks crash, it looked like something broke in the left front. Just seemed to understeer right across the track.

  3. I would love to see some better footage of Buemi’s second crash…

    Must be a very strange feeling to have your best qualifying day in your life with two crashes… I was really hoping that he would do well, its fun to see the STR guys going fast.

    Is it me or are the Fuji TV folks missing a lot… no video of Webber… a long shot of Buemi.

    1. StrFerrari4Ever
      3rd October 2009, 14:39

      You aint the only one I love seeing STR going fast I don’t know it seems to just evoke something inside me :D

      However it was very disappointing with Buemi’s crash & Alguersuari’s I had high hopes for Buemi as he could’ve done great things in Q3 but the race is long and hopefully Toro Rosso will be strong!

  4. On the point of changing drivers, the onlty way Toyota can do it at this stage is with the consent of the stewards:

    19.1 (a) During a season each team will be permitted to use four drivers. Changes may be made at any time before the start of the qualifying practice session provided any change proposed after 16.00 on the
    day of scrutineering receives the consent of the stewards.

    Additional changes for reasons of force majeure will be considered separately.
    2009 F1 sporting regulations

    1. According to Autosport:

      team president John Howett confirmed that he will seek permission for GP2 race-winner Kobayashi, who drove during both Friday practice sessions, to compete if required.

      1. Crash-Gate Part 2…

        Toyota gives crash orders to Glock, brings in hometown driver for Sasuka crowds…

        (oh no, what have i started…)

  5. here is one for your stats page, Keith:

    Whats the highest anyone has qualified after crashing twice? Has anyone ever crashed twice in qualifying before?

    1. No idea! Anyone?

    2. No idea either but back in the “good old days” when there was a spare car it might have been less of a drama. I seem to remember the odd occasion where someone wrecked their race car and then wrecked the T car.

  6. It was deffinatley worth getting up at 5am this morning!

    Great qualifying and realyl exciting!

    1. It was, but it was torture at the same time! I wanted to get back to bed. haha

      1. I have watched it from bed ;) But it was interesting, I can’t believe F1 didn’t race on Suzuka, it is such a great track…

  7. I wonder if Glock misjudge the amount of track left if something has not broken

    1. Appears Glock pushed it over the traction limit. Following quote is from the article in Keith’s link to Autosport above:

      The accident is believed to have been down to driver error – Glock was on a fast lap at the time and had set personal bests in the first and second sectors when he crashed at the final corner – with Howett insisting that the data showed nothing wrong with the car.

      “There’s absolutely nothing we can see on the data or mechanically on the car so I can categorically say that we don’t believe there’s any issue with the car,” said Howett.

      “He was on the edge, he was pushing for time, two green sectors, if the car had bitten and gone he’d have probably would have got across the line.”

  8. It was a bizzare qualifying. It is the first time that I have lost count of the number of crashes but I’m veyr relieved that none of the crashes were too serious/life threatening. I hope Timo makes a speedy recovery.

  9. and Buemi don’t forget.

  10. Keith, I might be mistaken, but I would swear Glock raced here on 2004, with Jordan,

  11. If you watch Timo in freeze frame your see the reason for the crash occuring between 7 and 9 seconds, He starts riding the kurb with slight left turning while putting the power down, then turns right, then turns sharper right but by then it`s a Playstation `it should make it` driving incident. Shame really because He aced the chicane which in turn led to Him taking too much final kurb.

  12. I think it’s understeer. The angle of his steering and that of other cars are similar, but it seems that Suzuka just takes so much out of the soft tires after just one flying lap, you barely have enough to make it home.

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