F1 2011 Indian Grand Prix qualifying result: Hamilton starts fifth

PUBLISHED: 10:38 29 October 2011 | UPDATED: 10:30 30 October 2011

Lewis Hamilton driving on the new Indian GP track [Picture: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes]

Lewis Hamilton driving on the new Indian GP track [Picture: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes]


FORMULA 1 driver Lewis Hamilton will start from the third row of the grid in the 2011 Indian Grand Prix after a nail-biting qualifying session.

The Vodafone McLaren Mercedes star was second quickest in the final phase of qualifying at the new Buddh International Circuit this morning (Saturday).

But a three-place grid penalty imposed for ignoring waved double yellow flags in first practice on Friday relegates the Hertfordshire-born F1 driver to fifth on the starting grid tomorrow (Sunday).

Double world champion Sebastian Vettel will start from pole position for Red Bull for the 13th time this season after a flying lap of 1m 24.178s.

Watched by Johnny English and Mr Bean star Rowan Atkinson, Hamilton clocked a time of 1m 24.474s to finish 0.296s behind Vettel.

Because of Hamilton’s penalty, Mark Webber will start on the front row alongside his Red Bull colleague Vettel.

Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso was fourth fastest in Q3 but will line-up third on the grid tomorrow ahead of the McLarens of Jenson Button and Hamilton, following his penalty.

The top 10 shootout was brought to a premature end when Ferrari driver Felipe Massa suffered a suspension failure through the super-fast Turn 11.

Hamilton was also second quickest in Q2 behind Vettel after posting a lap of 1m 25.019s to the German’s time of 1m 24.657s.

The McLaren pitwall said to Hamilton: “Great job. Are the tyres good enough on the first lap?”

Hamilton replied: “Tyres feel pretty good. I worked them hard on the out-lap and they were okay.”

Button had earlier finished third in Q1 with a 1m 26.225s and Hamilton was eighth on 1m 26.563s.

The 2011 Grand Prix of India starts at 9.30am GMT on Sunday.

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