Mark Webber’s disappointing fifth position on the grid for the Italian Grand Prix was a result of poor planning and a couple of technical gremlins, according to the Aussie racer.
As Sebastian Vettel took his 10th pole position of the year, Webber languished down in fifth, enduring a tough qualifying session at Monza that will see him start the Italian Grand Prix behind both McLarens and Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari. “Seb’s been quick here for sure, the McLarens were certainly doable though, but we just didn’t get it all together,” said Mark.
Webber’s weekend has been compromised by technical difficulties, including an oil leak that saw his mechanics in the pitlane until 0430 Saturday morning installing a replacement engine, and an intermittent KERS problem that kept Mark in the garage during qualifying until late in the first session.
'I was in too much doubt whether to do one or two runs. In the end, two runs was the thing to do'
“It wasn’t the smoothest session, that’s for sure,” he said. “We were late [going out], managing some KERS stuff. The guys got that in eventually which didn’t affect Q1 too much… the KERS was working OK but it was quite tricky to manage.”
So will it be a factor during the race? Webber shrugged: “I don’t know! Wouldn’t have a clue, and the engineers wouldn’t either, talk to the KERS guys…”
Despite the mechanical gremlins, Webber shouldered the blame for his qualifying performance, claiming that his decision to do only one run in Q3 was the main reason for his lowly grid position. “I was too much in doubt whether to do one run or two runs. In the end two runs was the thing to do. I fucked up.
“If you do one timed lap it’s nice if you get it right but it’s not the easiest venue to put the whole lap together – and the penalty for doing the extra lap here with the fuel effect is not so bad – it worked well for me last year.”
But with two DRS zones and the long, long Monza straights, qualifying position this year at Monza is perhaps less important that in has been at any time this century. Given the pace displayed by Vettel, Webber still has a good chance for a podium finish.