Silverstone, 5 July: Malaysia 2010 – that was the last time neither Ferrari made it past Q1. A gap of four years doesn’t make today’s result any less disappointing, nor does the fact that Williams, another of the longest serving teams in F1, made the same mistake with its two drivers, who will line up just ahead of the Scuderia duo tomorrow afternoon.
So tomorrow, on a track that has featured many of the Scuderia’s greatest moments, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen, having qualified 19th and 20th, will have to put their heads down, keep out of trouble and try and work their way back to the front. That will be no easy task on a high speed track with limited opportunities for overtaking. But there are 52 laps and with an unusual grid, there is always a chance of something unusual happening.
While the rain proved fatal for Ferrari’s chances, it did make for entertaining viewing for the impartial spectator, as there were several noteworthy or unusual performances. Jules Bianchi for example, on the books at the Ferrari Driver Academy, took his Marussia to twelfth in Q2, the very best performance ever in his F1 career. There was disappointment for the British fans when Lewis Hamilton made the wrong call right at the end of Q3, when he aborted his lap, only to watch Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg, achieve an incredible improvement in the final dry sector of the track, to snatch his fourth pole position of the year. Alongside the German tomorrow will be Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel, who also put in a last ditch effort to haul himself up from tenth to second. If Hamilton’s misfortune saw the large crowd go silent, they got something to cheer about as Jenson Button took an unlikely third for McLaren.
With a dry track forecast for tomorrow, what can the Prancing Horse aspire to tomorrow? One could suggest a points finish, but to be more specific would be difficult.