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Championship Standings:
1 Lewis Hamilton 302
2 Sebastian Vettel 236
3 Nico Rosberg 229
4 Kimi Raikkonen 123
5 Valtteri Bottas 111
6 Felipe Massa 109
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1 Mercedes 531
2 Ferrari 359
3 Williams/Mercedes 220
4 Red Bull/Renault 149
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10 Marussia/Ferrari 0
Bahrain GP: All Toyota Front Row

by Mark J. Cipolloni
Saturday, April 25, 2009


Timo Glock (L) and Jarno Trulli (R)
Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock qualified their Toyotas 1-2 for Sunday's Bahrain GP.  It was the first time ever that both Toyotas locked out the front row for an F1 race. 

Sebastian Vettel, who was fastest in Q1 and Q2, was 3rd fastest in his Red Bull ahead of Jenson Button's Brawn, Lewis Hamilton's McLaren and Ruben Barrichello's Brawn.

Fernando Alonso claimed seventh for Renault, with the pathetic Ferraris in eighth and 10th of Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen.  They were split by Williams’ Nico Rosberg. 

While Vettel appears to be the man to beat, his Red Bull teammate, Mark Webber was out in Q1, which underscores just how good Vettel is.  We maintain he is by far the best driver in F1 today and week in and week out he shows it.

Jarno Trulli's Toyota
The Italian Trulli, still recovering with a gruff voice, kissed the front of his TF109 in parc ferme, having outpaced not only his teammate Timo Glock but the winners of the first three races of 2009, Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) and Jenson Button (Brawn).

Precise car weights will be published later by the FIA, but Toyota team president John Howett believes the front row was achieved with a "combination" of aggressive strategy and true pace.

"I don't think we're excessively light but it's fairly aggressive," he said.

Brawn's Button, fourth, said in conversation with the BBC: "We don't have the pace we did in the first few races."

And in third, Vettel added: "I do think they (the Toyotas) are going to pull in (to the pits) a bit earlier, we'll see tomorrow."

Both BMWs, on the other hand, including Robert Kubica whose F1.09 was breathing fire in the pitlane on occasion, dropped out in the second phase, and although at least out of the ignominious Q1 company, so too did Renault's Nelson Piquet.

"Sorry guys," said the gutted Brazilian on the way back to the pits, before his teammate Fernando Alonso went on to qualify seventh.

Adrian Sutil and Mark Webber spent the opening moments of 'Q2' talking in the Red Bull hospitality area, after the Red Bull driver was blocked under braking.

German Sutil, who drives for Force India and was apologizing in person to his Australian rival, will almost certainly be penalized, but Webber can expect only to move up one place from his abysmal 19th.

Unable to exhibit the skill required to excel in F1, Sebastien Bourdais was dead last again as his F1 days appear numbered.



Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3
1. Trulli Toyota 1:32.779 1:32.671 1:33.431
2. Glock Toyota 1:33.165 1:32.613 1:33.712
3. Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:32.680 1:32.474 1:34.015
4. Button Brawn-Mercedes 1:32.978 1:32.842 1:34.044
5. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:32.851 1:32.877 1:34.196
6. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 1:33.116 1:32.842 1:34.239
7. Alonso Renault   1:33.627 1:32.860 1:34.578
8. Massa Ferrari   1:33.297 1:33.014 1:34.818
9. Rosberg Williams-Toyota   1:33.672 1:33.166 1:35.134
10. Raikkonen Ferrari   1:33.117 1:32.827 1:35.380
11. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 1:33.479 1:33.242
12. Nakajima Williams-Toyota   1:33.221 1:33.348
13. Kubica BMW-Sauber 1:33.495 1:33.487
14. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber 1:33.377 1:33.562
15. Piquet Renault   1:33.608 1:33.941
16. Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:33.722
17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:33.753
18. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 1:33.910
19. Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:34.038
20. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:34.159

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