Button keeps McLaren on top in Korea

2011 Korean GP third practice

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Jenson Button was fastest in the final practice session in Korea.

Team mate Lewis Hamilton made it a McLaren one-two at the head of the times with Mark Webber third.

The session got off to a very busy start as the teams tried to maximise the only hour of dry running available before qualifying.

Both Red Bulls stayed out on the track after their installation laps and headed the times to begin with.

But the McLarens showed immediate pace when they join the circuit, Hamilton quickly topping the times by over a second and a half.

He remained on top for much of the rest of the session, with only team mate Jenson Button able to get within a second of him.

Bruno Senna made light contact with the barrier when he spun at turn 13 early in the session. He damaged the front wing on his Renault but was able to return to the pits and continue his session.

Daniel Ricciardo lost a lot of time when his HRT stopped at the pit lane entrance and had to be pushed to his garage. But he was able to rejoin the session later.

Most of the drivers waiting until the final ten minutes before doing runs on the super soft tyres. But with almost all the cars on the track at once, traffic became a serious problem.

Sebastian Vettel caught Jaime Alguersuari during his first effort and had to abort his run.

But he caught the Toro Rosso driver again on his next run and was visibly agitated at losing time again, drawing alongside and shaking his hand at Alguersuari.

Hamilton had a similar run-in with Michael Schumacher which cost him an improvement on his final run.

However Button managed to get a clear lap in and crossed the line with a 1’36.910 to go fastest ahead of Hamilton and Webber.

Fernando Alonso was foutrh fastest having run a new front wing on his Ferrari, with team mate Felipe Massa fifth.

Pos.CarDriverCarBest lapGapLaps
14Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’36.91018
23Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’37.1990.28918
32Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’37.7230.81323
45Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’38.0291.11921
56Felipe MassaFerrari1’38.4341.52418
67Michael SchumacherMercedes1’39.5592.64923
710Vitaly PetrovRenault1’39.6122.70220
814Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes1’39.6602.75022
91Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’39.6952.78522
108Nico RosbergMercedes1’39.7432.83325
1115Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’39.8472.93722
1219Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’39.8512.94120
1318Sebastien BuemiToro Rosso-Ferrari1’39.9643.05421
1416Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’40.0053.09517
1517Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’40.0303.12018
169Bruno SennaRenault1’40.4513.54119
1712Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1’40.5293.61920
1811Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1’40.7113.80122
1920Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’41.9094.99918
2021Jarno TrulliLotus-Renault1’41.9455.03513
2124Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1’43.2756.36519
2225Jerome D’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1’44.3777.46716
2323Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth1’44.4217.51113
2422Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1’45.1438.23311

Combined practice times

1Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’50.9321’36.910-14.02238
2Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes2’03.3911’50.8281’37.199-13.62950
3Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault2’05.1831’53.0491’37.723-15.32655
4Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’52.7741’38.029-14.74551
5Felipe MassaFerrari1’53.7071’38.434-15.27343
6Michael SchumacherMercedes2’02.7841’54.9651’39.559-15.40654
7Vitaly PetrovRenault1’54.2001’39.612-14.58847
8Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes2’03.1411’54.3921’39.660-14.73260
9Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault2’02.8401’52.6461’39.695-12.95160
10Nico RosbergMercedes2’04.3111’53.9141’39.743-14.17155
11Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes2’02.9121’53.9571’39.847-14.1166
12Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’53.4021’39.851-13.55145
13Sebastien BuemiToro Rosso-Ferrari2’03.1821’53.9481’39.964-13.98457
14Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari2’03.2921’55.5441’40.005-15.53953
15Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari2’04.7971’55.2031’40.030-15.17350
16Bruno SennaRenault1’55.1871’40.451-14.73648
17Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth2’06.8521’56.0671’40.529-15.53853
18Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth2’08.2181’54.8311’40.711-14.1257
19Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’56.6691’41.909-14.7639
20Jarno TrulliLotus-Renault1’57.1731’41.945-15.22832
21Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth2’14.5081’58.2691’43.275-14.99448
22Jerome d’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth2’12.6581’59.4581’44.377-15.08149
23Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth2’00.1651’44.421-15.74433
24Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth2’09.2321’59.9581’45.143-14.81544
25Karun ChandhokLotus-Renault2’06.35011
26Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Ferrari2’07.5419
27Narain KarthikeyanHRT-Cosworth2’08.83214

2011 Korean 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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    16 comments on “Button keeps McLaren on top in Korea”

    1. It just occured to me that Red Bull – with Vettel at least – might try to gear their setup more towards qualifying for the remainder of the season to try maintain their 100% pole record now that the drivers title is wrapped up and the constructors title is practically certain.

    2. Cool, Mclaren looks like they really have the pace.

      1. They want to win their 700th race

    3. Button was 0.4s quicker than the fastest time in FP3 last year.

      So there’s a good chance last year’s pole position time will be beaten. That was a 1’35.585 by Vettel.

      Food for thought for those of you making your predictions – get them in here before qualifiyng starts:

      Make your Korean GP predictions now: prizes up for grabs

      1. That’s exactly the logic I applied, but I did mine before FP3. So more a stab in the dark (based on last years time)!

    4. Button is faster than you…

      1. Sorry, Keith. I’m still getting my head around the new format.

    5. Good observations made by Joe Saward regard Schuey’s block on Lewis:

      “…Lewis Hamilton had looked faster but Michael Schumacher blocked Lewis in no uncertain terms and left Hamilton frustrated. Clearly the Mercedes was never going to be a match for the McLarens, the car being around two and half seconds a lap slower, but Michael seemed in no mood to get out of the way. Whether he was trying to screw with Hamilton’s head or simply being bloody-minded is hard to say.

      The same thing happened to Sebastian Vettel with Jaime Alguersuari being the man in the way. It will be interesting to see what happens in qualifying but Mercedes needs to be a little careful because the FIA Stewards gave the team a bit of a smack on Friday evening with a fine of €10,000 (€5,000 suspended) for failing to appear in a timely manner for a disciplinary investigation (which roughly translates as lack of respect for the authorities)…”

      1. The drivers have absolutely no obligation to let others past in practice.

      2. @becken-lima I think that’s reading far too much into it.

        Schumacher’s got his own session to worry about. He did his super-soft runs earlier on so he was going slower than he might have been at this point. He obviously had a programme to complete and it’s not his job to get out of Hamilton’s way.

        In qualifying it’s a different matter because you’re not allowed to impede people, but this was practice.

    6. I have a feeling Michael and Lewis will soon become ‘magnetised’

    7. Keith, I certainly can understand you didn’t yet get to analyse FP3, but it would be great if you could find time to do that still. Does anyone have the laptimes?

      I haven’t been able to see FP3, but hear that the long run pace was quite interesting between the McLaren’s and Red Bulls, and Ferrari being happy with their tyre wear, it would be great to have more insight before the race, especially with Red Bull seemingly planning some different strategy.

      1. @bosyber

        I always have a look at the numbers before writing the pre-race analysis and obviously they’ll be especially interesting today as there was no dry running yesterday.

        1. Yes, I figured you do, sorry for being impatient.

          It’s the combination of not having seen FP3, FP1&2 having been wet, and me still having the rest of the day to wait for the race!

    8. McLaren and Red Bull have nearly the same pace, with Ferrari behind.

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