Button P1 for Monaco

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Jenson Button has continued his dominating performance by claiming pole position for tomorrow’s Monaco Grand Prix. In what would have been a resounding return to form for Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, Jenson pipped the Finnish driver in the waning seconds to claim his first ever pole position at Monaco. Jenson’s teammate Ruben Barrichello will start directly behind the Briton in thrid position. Ferrari have every reason to feel better on this particular street circuit as the fuel load strategy was not off from the Brawn’s and yet they nearly claimed pole. This is a drastic increase in performance and have left some wondering if Ferrari have not surpassed the Red Bull’s as BRawn main competitor.

Perhaps more devastating news could be found elsewhere but I am hard pressed to know what it may be other than Toyota’s Timo Glock and Jarno Trulli being devoured in Q1 and failing to advance to Q2. There is no question Jarno Trulli is quick at Monaco so you have to consider the Toyota as a suspect character in the equation that would render them last prompting the grade: Qualifying=fail. While we are on the topic of failure, BMW looked like last years Honda and I am bereft of the logic that would find the beleaguered team at teh back of the grid.

Sebastian Vettel may have had his weekend ruined due to traffic as he is the lightest car on the grid and no doubt was looking for pole only to get snarled behind traffic with his penultimate lap scuppered by the Williams of Kaz Nakajima. Not the result Red Bull was hoping for no doubt but one can never rule out Kaz for his interesting, elemental effect of F1. Vettel’s teammate Mark Webber fared no better with 8th place and a standard fuel load on par with all the others.

While many were chiding Williams for ‘showboating’, Nico Rosberg earned his P6 on the same fuel load strategy as the other teams so perhaps Nico and Williams are digger deeper this weekend than just the Rolodex full of patron numbers. I am wondering if Massa had a moment or traffic as his fuel load was on par with the others but failed to equal his teammate’s performance and that’s got to hurt. Suspiciously I’ll blame it on “hydraulics”.

If Jenson button can win from pole; he’ll be the first Brit to do so since Sir Jackie Stewart in 1979. At this point, I wouldn’t bet against him or history.

Positions after Qualifying:

1. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:15.210 1:15.016 1:14.902
2. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:15.746 1:14.514 1:14.927
3. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:15.425 1:14.829 1:15.077
4. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:15.915 1:14.879 1:15.271
5. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:15.340 1:15.001 1:15.437
6. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:15.094 1:14.846 1:15.455
7. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:15.495 1:14.809 1:15.516
8. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:15.260 1:14.825 1:15.653
9. Alonso Renault (B) 1:15.898 1:15.200 1:16.009
10. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:15.930 1:15.579 1:17.344
11. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:15.834 1:15.833
12. Piquet Renault (B) 1:16.013 1:15.837
13. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:16.063 1:16.146
14. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:16.120 1:16.281
15. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:16.248 1:16.545
16. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:16.264
17. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:16.264
18. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:16.405
19. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:16.548
20. Glock Toyota (B) 1:16.788

Fuel loads:

1. Jenson Button 647.5
2. Kimi Raikkonen 644.0
3. Rubens Barrichello 648.0
4. Sebastian Vettel 631.5
5. Felipe Massa 643.5
6. Nico Rosberg 642.0
7. Heikki Kovalainen 644.0
8. Mark Webber 646.5
9. Fernando Alonso 654.0
10. Kazuki Nakajima 668.0
11. Sebastien Buemi 670.0*
12. Nelson Piquet 673.1*
13. Giancarlo Fisichella 693.0*
14. Sebastien Bourdais 699.5*
15. Adrian Sutil 670.0*
16. Lewis Hamilton 645.5*
17. Nick Heidfeld 680.0*
18. Robert Kubica 696.0*
19. Jarno Trulli 688.3*
20. Timo Glock 700.8*

* declared weight

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