So qualifying is now over. Thankfully, I did not make any predictions because I never would have guessed the final order. The starting grid is as follows:
Paul Di Resta
Jean Eric Vergne
Pedro de la Rosa
Recall that this includes two driver adjustments from the actual qualifying order. Michael Schumacher put down the best time but had a five place grid place due to his crash with Senna in Spain. Maldonado was also pushed back after a ten place penalty due to some very aggressive driving with Perez and a subsequent gear box change. Perez crashed in Q1 without setting a time which explains his position.
On the subject of the back grid, having two midfield teams start at the back will be very interesting from understanding the relative temperaments of each driver. Maldonado in particular has shown a serious lack of patience and petty behavior. Recall Belgium last year when he drove into Hamilton on the cool down lap after qualifying and his incident with Perez in Q1. There is certainly some bad blood at the back of the grid and it will be interesting to see how it plays out as they try to carve up the HRTs and the like.
At the sharper end of the grid, the only piece of news is the fact that Vettel did not run a lap when his teammate took an adjusted grid pole. Rumor has it that he will start on the harder tire. One stop repeat? I don’t think so. Rather, I think the harder tire will be able to deal with traffic better than the super soft until a gap opens up to give Vettel some clear air.
Then again, its Monaco, who knows what will happen.