Fists Waving and Lots of Fun at European Grand Prix Quaifying

Giancarlo Fisichella was quite the sight berating Jacques Villeneuve.  Fisichela stormed into the BMW Sauber pit lane between the last two sessions of qualifying and looked like he wanted Jacques to step out of his car and go at it mano-a-mano.  He was still fuming quite a while afterwards, and it appears that the stewards heard him as Villeneuve lost his fast time and got demoted one spot on the grid.  All this because Fissi felt that Jacques blocked him on his fast lap (Jacques was on his warm up lap) and cost him the chance to fight for pole.  Now, if Fissi had just kept going and tried to put in another fast lap, he would have had more than likely made it into the top ten, like Jacques did. 

I know Fisichella is worred about his seat at Renault, and rightly so.  However, I think what he did was very un-sportsmanlike and he should have been penalized as well.  From my vantagepoint, Fissi was not close enough to Jacques to accuse him of blocking so he should just pick up his game and stop feeling so threatened by Jacques when Alonso is the one who's making him look like a second tier driver.  'Nuff said about that.

The other exciting news is that the Ferrari turnaround is real after all.  Michael Schumacher quaified second and Massa third, while Fernando Alonso took his first pole of the season for Renault.  This should prove for an interesting start since all of these men like to be in front after the first corner. 

Honda had a bit of a surprise with Rubens Barrichello qualifying in fourth place ahead of Jenson Button who only managed to take sixth. Both Honda drivers sandwiched the McLaren Mercedes of Kimi Raikkonen, still indicating that Ron Dennis and Norbert Haug have some work to do if they want Kimi to be word champion.  Juan Pablo Montoya qualified in seventh and is openly looking for a ride next year.  The silly season should start officially in a month, but speculation has been swirling around who will be at McLaren in 2007 since the start of the this season when it was announced that Alonso is moving to the Grove-based outfit.

Williams had mixed results with Mark Webber qualifying in tenth and Nico Rosberg in 12th.  However, both Cosworth power plants were replaced this weekend, making the change out of sequence,  so that means a 10 point grid position penalty putting both drivers at the back in 20th and 22nd place respectively.  

The qualifying session results are as follows, but they are not the exact starting grid positions:

P. No  Driver       Team - Engine   Tyres    Times      Ave/Gaps
 1.  1  ALONSO       Renault           M   1'29"819  206.335 Km/h  
 2.  5  M.SCHUMACHER Ferrari           B   1'30"028    + 0'00"209  
 3.  6  MASSA        Ferrari           B   1'30"407    + 0'00"588  
 4. 11  BARRICHELLO  Honda             M   1'30"754    + 0'00"935  
 5.  3  RAIKKONEN    McLaren Mercedes  M   1'30"933    + 0'01"114  
 6. 12  BUTTON       Honda             M   1'30"940    + 0'01"121  
 7.  8  TRULLI       Toyota            B   1'31"419    + 0'01"600  
 8. 17  VILLENEUVE   BMW Sauber        M   1'31"542    + 0'01"723  
 9.  4  MONTOYA      McLaren Mercedes  M   1'31"880    + 0'02"061 
10.  9  WEBBER       Williams Cosworth B   1'33"405    + 0'03"586 

11.  7  R.SCHUMACHER Toyota            B   1'30"944               
12. 10  ROSBERG      Williams Cosworth B   1'31"194               
13.  2  FISICHELLA   Renault           M   1'31"197               
14. 14  COULTHARD    RedBull Ferrari   M   1'31"227               
15. 16  HEIDFELD     BMW Sauber        M   1'31"422               
16. 20  LIUZZI       Toro Rosso Cosw.  M   1'31"728               

17. 15  KLIEN        RedBull Ferrari   M   1'32"901               
18. 19  ALBERS       Midland Toyota    B   1'32"936               
19. 21  SPEED        Toro Rosso Cosw.  M   1'32"992               
20. 18  MONTEIRO     Midland Toyota    B   1'33"658               
21. 22  SATO         S. Aguri F1 Honda B   1'35"239               
22. 23  MONTAGNY     S. Aguri F1 Honda B   1'46"505 

The starting grid for the race (as at 12:01am EST) looks like this:

P. No  Driver       Team - Engine   Tyres
 1.  1  ALONSO       Renault           M 
 2.  5  M.SCHUMACHER Ferrari           B 
 3.  6  MASSA        Ferrari           B 
 4. 11  BARRICHELLO  Honda             M 
 5.  3  RAIKKONEN    McLaren Mercedes  M 
 6. 12  BUTTON       Honda             M 
 7.  8  TRULLI       Toyota            B 
 8. 17  VILLENEUVE   BMW Sauber        M 
 9.  4  MONTOYA      McLaren Mercedes  M 

10.  7  R.SCHUMACHER Toyota            B 
11.  2  FISICHELLA   Renault           M 
12. 14  COULTHARD    RedBull Ferrari   M 
13. 16  HEIDFELD     BMW Sauber        M 
14. 20  LIUZZI       Toro Rosso Cosw.  M 

15. 15  KLIEN        RedBull Ferrari   M  
16. 19  ALBERS       Midland Toyota    B  
17. 21  SPEED        Toro Rosso Cosw.  M  
18. 18  MONTEIRO     Midland Toyota    B  
19. 22  SATO         S. Aguri F1 Honda B  
20.  9  WEBBER       Williams Cosworth B 

21. 23  MONTAGNY     S. Aguri F1 Honda B  

22. 10  ROSBERG      Williams Cosworth B 


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