Hamilton keeps McLaren on top as Vettel and Alonso crash

2011 Abu Dhabi GP second practice

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Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi, 2011
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi, 2011

McLaren headed the second practice session in Abu Dhabi but this time it was Lewis Hamilton on top.

He set a best lap of 1’39.586, two-tenths of a second quicker than team mate Jenson Button.

The two Ferraris were third and fourth but Fernando Alonso was one of two top drivers to hit trouble.

Early in the second half of the session, Vettel lost his car at turn one in much the same way Felipe Massa had in the first session.

But the Red Bull driver made it all the way to the TecPro barrier on the outside of the corner, where the RB7 became stuck, forcing Vettel to get out of the car. He was able to return to the track later in the session.

Around a quarter of an hour later Alonso spun into the barrier at almost exactly the same place as Vettel. The right-rear of the Ferrari was damaged in the impact and Alonso also had to abandon his mount.

Mark Webber also had a quick spin in his Red Bull at turn 18, though he managed not to hit anything.

The session ended with two McLarens in front of two Ferraris and two Red Bulls. Michael Schumacher was seventh, the Mercedes driver taking to the run-offs several times during the session.

The Force Indias of Adrian Sutil and Paul di Resta were next, with Kamui Kobayashi completing the top ten ahead of team mate Sergio Perez.

Pos.CarDriverCarBest lapGap
13Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’39.58631
24Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’39.7850.19929
35Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’39.9710.38520
46Felipe MassaFerrari1’39.9800.39433
52Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’40.1040.51835
61Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’40.1320.54626
77Michael SchumacherMercedes1’40.5530.96734
814Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes1’40.9511.36534
915Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’41.0211.43537
1016Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’41.4901.90434
1117Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’41.5651.97934
1218Sebastien BuemiToro Rosso-Ferrari1’41.6802.09433
1310Vitaly PetrovRenault1’41.9472.36131
1419Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’41.9832.39734
159Bruno SennaRenault1’42.3692.78336
1611Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1’42.7983.21235
1712Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1’42.9103.32434
1820Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’43.5623.97636
1921Jarno TrulliLotus-Renault1’44.0504.46438
208Nico RosbergMercedes1’44.2654.67941
2124Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1’45.4865.90034
2225Jerome D’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1’46.1426.55632
2323Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth1’46.2496.66321
2422Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1’46.3286.74234

2011 Abu Dhabi 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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    44 comments on “Hamilton keeps McLaren on top as Vettel and Alonso crash”

    1. Amazing how close a lot of the drivers are to their teammates. I guess there are clear distinctions between all the teams’ performance now, so we are getting the ‘Noah’s ark’ look to the grid more and more often.

      Odd for Rosberg to be so far down despite having more laps than anyone. Mercedes have been trying some different strategies in practice recently.

      1. But I guess we can’t expect the ranking of these teams to be the same at the front come Q3, with McLaren leading Ferrari and Red Bull Racing only third fastest!

        Would be a nice suprise if it did turn out that way though :-)

      2. This tends to show that the car definitely plays a great role in the success of a driver.
        I am a bit surprised by RB’s pace. Have they got these .6 of a sec up their sleeves ?

        1. Vettel never got to setting really fast laps because of ending up at the barriers. And they might have been doing quite a different program.

      3. nowadays the cars are has so under-powered with so much downforce that most drivers on the grid are on the limit of the car. there is maybe a few tenths between them. in the old days a driver could make up several seconds on his team mate, because the cars were harder to drive and harder to drive up to their true potential. today if you have less downforce than your opponent there is pretty much nothing you can do. If you put Ayrton Senna in an HRT he will not be able to beat an average driver in a sauber or STR. its much harder to finish well with a car that doesnt deserve it. it wasnt always like this. reliability plays a role but i believe the cars are easier to drive.

        1. That’s interesting. I’ve neer thought of things that way: i think that you are right.

        2. Good point – well raised

      4. On the BBC comentary they said they though Rosberg was doing a race simulation, about 30 laps, he did that in India as well.

    2. The two Ferraris were second and third

      Third and fourth ;)

      1. Although I’d’ve liked it more if they were 2nd and 4rd, possibly with Felipe ahead of Fernando :P

      2. Changed, thanks.

        1. Ah so was I right? Okay I’ll stop posting now! It’s definitely not my day!

      3. Sorry @keithcollantine, my fault, I thought you meant at the end of the session! :oops:

    3. Did MSC complete a lap without running off?

      1. he always does this in practice, testing the limits of the car. he used to do it in the Ferrari days and then drive a flawless race without mistakes.

        1. Just look at Vettel…

        2. Normally I would agree that he tries the limits and sometimes too far, but this time in one of he corners it looked as though he didn’t even try to go round it several times.

    4. force india looks they are the fastest of the “big three” in the midfield battle.

      1. That would make them the “medium three” would it not?

    5. times of toro rosso and sauber are so close, so midfield battle going to be great.

    6. That circuit is beautiful piece of architecture but that’s not for F1!

      When will Bernie save a slot for “stand-alone” GPs? Some countries would not be willing to embark on multi-year deals with Bernie but would find OK to stage a single GP.

      Just an idea.

      1. @jcost It’s just not viable from a financial point of view. Many circuits prefer the security of having a deal for many years as it gives them more opportunities to cover the cost of hosting a race.

      1. That’s an amazing view, hopefully we get to see that with other drivers in the future. Would be great during the race as well, for replays and such when things go wrong.

      2. Amazing!!! Its great that RB mounted the Camera there,Gives us a good insight on how focused a Driver must be through Corners & Straights.

        Because a blink could be a result of an error

      3. Wow!
        But he must blink sometimes, doesn’t he? There were some moments of shade, maybe then?

        But it’s a thing I’ve never thought about: this sport asks so much control, it is really bizarre, even the blink of an eye at the wrong moment, can make you end up the loser.

        Or is it less extreme? Any karters or rally drivers out here who know how it is to drive with contact lenses?

        1. I counted three blinks…

          1. I saw him blink a bit on the back straight. Not in any corners though. He looks very calm for somebody doing over 200kph.

          2. Me too :)

      4. That really is a great camera, especially at night! During the first session you couldn’t see his eyes at all, I guess because of the colored visors they are using in daylight. I hope they’ll have the camera mounted it during the race as well.

      5. Thats a great camera position… Thanks for sharing…

    7. How come vettel could go back out? I thought that if you binned the car you could not go back out in that session… :\

      1. I thought that if you binned the car you could not go back out in that session

        That is qualifying.

        1. And the fact that RB got the car back before the late stages of the Session with only small/no repairs to be made.

    8. I bet Massa loved hearing that.

      1. They are putting down all the other drivers, specially the ones that had have at least a win in the current: Vettel, Button, Schumacher, Kovalaine, Rubbens… I think it was specially directed to Vettel…and it was uncalled for…

        1. Hahaha that was exactly how I saw Alonso’s comment — a dig at Vettel! But I have no problem with it. It’s aaaaall part of the game. ;-)

    9. What was so refreshing about reading Vettel’s views (autosport.com) on his incident was his apparent honesty about it… “got too greedy.” Now that shows maturity on the driver’s part. Are you listening/ reading Lewis?

      Also, did anyone else notice Schumacher is upbeat about Kimi coming back… and so is Whitmarsh. One of the few things i’d agree with Whitmarsh on and this is most certainly one.

    10. Sorry, off topic, but the article heading does at least mention Hamilton and Alonso!

      Alonso was quoted at Abu Dhabi as saying:

      “In fact, at the next winter testing he [Hamilton] will be the only one I’ll be watching closely. The other guys can win if they’ve got the best car; he’s the one who’s able to clinch a championship with a car that’s not the best.”

      Hamilton was apparently quite taken aback by the comment and replied:

      “Despite the relationship we’ve had, I think our friendship and the respect we have for one another has got a lot stronger, so it’s nice to see that coming out because I’ve only ever said he is one of the best drivers, if not the best driver here.”


      I know drivers comments about their fellow competitors are usually just mind-games, but I fail to see what either would gain from this very public verbal hug.

      Blimey, respect.

      1. I have my theory… but everytime I think about it, made me want to slap the both of them and kick them in the ….

      2. the only reason he won’t watch Vettel closely is because he can’t stay near enough to him!

      3. Well, it doesn’t get much better than that: comliments from F. Alonso, vastly regarded as possibly the best all-round driver out there. If that doesn’t cheer LH up…

    11. Michael Schumacher was seventh, the Mercedes driver taking to the run-offs several times during the session.

      old fox testing every single inch in the circuit eh? In 2006 @Nurburgring during FP1 and FP2, he keeps missing the pit entry and when asked, he mentioned he was trying to minimize the pit entry time.

    12. Unusual to see so many drivers having moments off the circuit. Makes me think that they might be running more kinds of set-up than usual. Experimenting?

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