With the Friday practice sessions done and dusted, lets look at what we can conclude from the two practice sessions and what can we expect on Saturday in Qualifying.
Analyzing Race pace:
Average times on the basis of long runs in practice 2:
Vettel – 1:32.123
Webber – 1:30.557
Button – 1:30.649
Hamilton – 1:30.428
Alonso – Not Counted
Massa – 1:30.511
Schumacher – 1:30.183
Rosberg – 1:30.309
Raikkonen – 1:30.386
The above timings were posted by drivers on heavy fuel and they reflect the race pace of various top drivers.
From the lap-times, it is clear that the Mercedes are the fastest team and Schumacher was massively quick in the both the practice sessions.
Note: In practice 2, Schumacher finished P10 because he didn’t do as many low fuel runs as other drivers due to a DRS failure. Had he done a few low fuel runs, he would have been higher in the order.
The most surprising thing is that Mercedes are good through sector 3 as well. It is surprising, because the Parabolica is a very long corner and the Mercedes car seems to have been struggling from mid-corner under-steer in the previous races through the long corners. So, maybe the new aeropackage they have brought has brought some significant changes in the car.
Ferrari and McLaren are very close to the Mercedes and it is going to be tough battle between these three teams throughout the weekend.
So, what can we expect from Qualifying?
I think the top 6 places on the grid will comprise Mercedes, Mclaren and Ferrari. Any driver from these three teams can take the pole position for the race.
My Prediction for qualifying:
1.Schumacher. 2.Rosberg 3.Alonso