Sebastian Vettel is hoping to translate his pole position into victory at his home Grand Prix, as the German edged out Fernando Alonso around Hockenheim.
The Red Bull driver snatched pole from the Ferrari driver in the dying seconds of qualifying – sending his home fans in to raptures.
However, the 23-year-old is well aware of the challenge facing him in tomorrow’s race, as he attempts to claw back points on the leading McLaren duo.
Meanwhile, Mark Webber was unable to challenge his team-mate for pole after making a mistake on his final qualifying performance.
Although the error left the Australian bitterly disappointed, he remains confident that he can be triumphant from fourth on the grid.
Sebastian Vettel – 1st: “That was extremely exciting, especially in Q3. I knew that both times I went out I only had one timed lap, so I had to get it right. It’s difficult here, there are some places that can easily lead you into a mistake on this track. If you push too much then you can lose the edge of the tyres and some time. My final lap wasn’t 100% perfect and there were a couple of places where I went over the limit, which cost me some time. But, in the end, it was enough – although only just to stay ahead and get the pole. I am extremely happy thanks to the team. It is the first time I am on pole at home, but the main challenge will come tomorrow.”
Mark Webber – 4th: “I made a mistake into Turn one on my final timed lap. I turned in a little bit late and cut the kerb, which took me out wide so I had to abandon the lap. It was a shame I couldn’t take advantage of the improving track conditions at the end of the session; it wasn’t the best day for me. I let the boys down a bit, but Seb did a good lap for pole. Fourth is still not too bad let’s see what we can do from there in tomorrow’s race.”
Christian Horner: “It was a fantastic lap from Sebastian to get pole at his home race, albeit by the tightest of margins. Mark was right up there throughout the two qualifying sessions and again the drivers were split by very little. Unfortunately he ran wide at Turn one at the start of his last timed lap, but first and fourth is still a strong team result and it promises to be a good race tomorrow.”
(Renault) Fabrice Lom: “What a nice feeling to have a pole position at Sebastian’s home race. It’s so good for him, I imagine he’s very happy. Also to get pole by the tiniest margin, two thousandths of a second, is a very good achievement. Mark is a bit further back behind the Ferraris, but first and fourth ahead of the McLarens is a strong qualifying result. We need to capitalise on this tomorrow in the race in order to close the gap in the Championship.”