Singapore Grand Prix – Qualifying

Singapore. A dizzying blur of cars. Just keep drinking!
Singapore. A dizzying blur of cars. Just keep drinking.

What is that saying? Its not so much the despair that kills you but the hope. Its often quoted by the husband, the original doomlord. I just googled to see where that quote came from and it was John Cleese in the sublime movie, Clockwise. That is so the husband. I love it.

“It's not the despair, Laura. I can take the despair. It's the hope I can't stand
“Its not the despair, Laura. I can take the despair. Its the hope I can’t stand” – Brian Stimpson in Clockwise

Well we should be a-o-kay in Singapore as I have literally ZERO expectation that we will have any form of excitement or drama. And if another former driver/pundit tells me that Singapore is a stunning track and race weekends are freaking awesome I will set my bees’ nest on them. Yes we have an actual bees’ nest in our recently moved into house which is a pleasant discovery given I hate bees and I hate honey.

So expect lots of endless, over the top hype about how exciting and thrilling night-time races are…what an electric atmosphere there is at the track…yadda yadda. I suspect one of the reasons the atmosphere is so good is that the uber rich locals, dignatories and expats who go along have been quaffing magnums of Bolly all day (waves to Roger!) and might be more excited about seeing the Killers gig than Vettel screeching off into the distance never to be seen again by the first corner. I wouldn’t say no to a Singapore GP jolly (obviously) but watching it on TV is Unadulterated Dullsville.

The Killers are performing at this year's Singapore GP. Last year it was Justin Bieber. The horror.
The Killers are performing at this year’s Singapore GP. Last year it was Justin Bieber. The horror.

The build-up on Sky was ahem a little on the dry side but the husband sat enraptured during the ‘new engines for next year’ feature.  If you’re really lucky, I’ll ask him to guest-blog over the winter with his memories of turbos first time round. Actually he has just corrected me to say he doesn’t remember turbos first round because that was in the 1930s. Insert joke here.

All hail the return of turbos. The engines that like to explode!
All hail the return of turbos. The engines like that to explode!

So what happened in Q1?

With the clock ticking down to 3 seconds, Perez had yet to set a time. The husband helpfully told me that Keke had gone fastest. Bless. Under a minute to go and Hamilton, Button, Alonso were 1-2-3 and Massa was in the Dropzone of Doom.

And Giedo van der Garde hit the wall. For the second time this weekend. Aiming for a hat-trick on race day perhaps?

Massa at the death squeaked into Q2 so OUT of qualifying went Di Resta, Maldonado, Pic, van der Garde, Bianchi and Chilton.

So Di Resta has gone out of Q1 for the 5th time in the last 8 races. Future Ferrari driver? Nah. There was a huge post-mortem into Di Resta’s collapse in form with Damon saying loyally “there’s always the race”. Er I doubt it, not on a street circuit where there is squat diddly chance of overtaking unless you’re blessed with a Senna-esque ability to find margins on tracks that elude others. To point out the bloody obvious, this would not include Di Resta. Ah we have a Di Resta interview. Shall we have a sweepstake who he will blame? My money is on the team (excluding his good self). The husband thinks he will do a mea culpa and take the blame himself. Hahaha. Ah gold star for me – it is of course the team’s fault – he admitted he was struggling a bit more over one lap compared to Sutil, his team-mate, but his long runs are “in a completely different league”. Er that would be League Two at best, Paul. Humble and team-player would not be words synonymous with Paul Di Resta or indeed likable.


Kimi apparently has a bad back. Make of that what you will. Eric Bouillier was interviewed and sounded like a broken man. I’m sure he’s a lovely chap but he doesn’t really cut it for me as a team principal.

Eric Bouillier. Team bosses shouldn't be this cuddly. See Ron Dennis, Frank Williams etc.
Eric Bouillier. Can’t think of a single witty comment.

Meanwhile the husband is busy distracting me with an endless stream of apparently dramatic football results. Various teams managed by Alan Pardew or formerly managed by Alan Pardew have lost. Also Chelsea are failing to win again. Edit: To spite me Chelsea of course won 2-0 but hey losing to Basle at home. How we laughed. The Return of the Special One isn’t looking so special. Never go back they say. Bugger.

The Second Coming: Do they work? Discuss.
The Second Coming: do they work? Discuss.

Just remembered that Q2 was well underway. Ooops. The Mercedes topped the timesheets, only because the Red Bulls hadn’t deigned to make an appearance yet but not for long as they exited the pits. In the blink of an eye, normal service was resumed with Vettel and Webber taking 1-2. For reasons best known to McLaren, Button and Perez left it very late to come out and set a time. Kimi just missed out (again – dear oh dear) on Q3. And Button just scraped into the top ten as Ron Dennis menacingly watched proceedings at trackside. No one does menacing quite like Uncle Ron.

Dumped out of Q2 were: 11. Hulkenberg 12. Vergne 13. Raikkonen 14. Perez 15. Sutil 16. Bottas.

And so to the Hedonistic Extravaganza of the Top Ten Shoot Out. Apologies, I am in a right sarky mood today. The initial top 5 times were set by Vettel, Rosberg, Webber, Hamilton and Grosjean. So where were Ferrari? It appeared we had the usual Q3 shite of drivers just doing outlaps and conserving tyres for tomorrow’s race. I don’t blame the teams for trying to extract every possible advantage that they’re legitimately able to but this format is utterly crud especially for the fans and spectators except for those who already are seeing the cars double through their champagne goggles and good luck to them!

Is this possibly The Most Boring Qualifying Ever? Remember when Senna, Prost and Mansell would screech out of the pits with a minute to go and it would be all-out war on the track to see who could snatch pole (usually Senna). Nico split the Red Bulls to take second, Hamilton could only get 5th and Grosjean took 3rd which was in all fairness a superb achievement.

So (weariest of weary sighs), Vettel is on pole. Again. Brundle ruefully remarked he could be world champion one day. The husband quipped “what like tomorrow”. Its not funny.

The grid for tomorrow:

  1. Vettel

  2. Rosberg

  3. Grosjean

  4. Webber

  5. Hamilton

  6. Massa

  7. Alonso

  8. Button

  9. Ricciardo

  10. Gutierrez
I can barely wait*. But hey the track is visually stunning so that’s all good. Well you never know, Grosjean is third so anything could happen. Right off to find out what the husband will be making tomorrow to entertain my blogging audience! Either that or I’ll blog about Clockwise.

*this is a lie

Singapore. Show us what you got.
Singapore. Show us what you got.


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