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Qualifying - Webber scores maiden F1 pole in Germany 11 Jul 2009

Qualifying parc ferme (L to R): Jenson Button (GBR) Brawn Grand Prix, third; Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing, pole position; Rubens Barrichello (BRA) Brawn Grand Prix, second.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, German Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Nurburgring, Germany, Saturday, 11 July 2009 Jenson Button (GBR) Brawn Grand Prix BGP 001.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, German Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Nurburgring, Germany, Saturday, 11 July 2009 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4/24.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, German Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Nurburgring, Germany, Saturday, 11 July 2009 Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault R29.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, German Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Nurburgring, Germany, Saturday, 11 July 2009

Mark Webber took his first pole position after changeable weather contributed to a gripping Q3 shootout at the Nurburgring on Saturday, which saw the Australian, Red Bull team mate Sebastian Vettel, the Brawns of Rubens Barrichello and Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren all in contention for the top slot.

First it was Hamilton’s. Then Button’s, before Webber’s 1m 32.230s put him ahead. Vettel’s 1m 32.480s momentarily placed him second before Button’s 1m 32.473s earned him P2, but immediately Barrichello’s 1m 32.357s lap finally gave the Brazilian second place.

With Button third and Vettel fourth, Hamilton’s 1m 32.616s stood up for fifth, with team mate Heikki Kovalainen enjoying McLaren’s renaissance with sixth on 1m 33.859s.

Adrian Sutil staged a major surprise for Force €ndia on his home ground with 1m 34.316s for seventh, ahead of the Ferraris of Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen on 1m 34.574s and 1m 34.710s respectively. Nelson Piquet was Renault’s faster runner in 10th on 1m 34.803s.

Rain at the start of Q2 had thrown things into huge confusion as Williams’ Kazuki Nakajima and Massa went off the road on their slicks and everyone else came haring back in for Bridgestone’s intermediates. Kovalainen spun and clattered the wall in Turn Four, but was able to continue.

As the track dried out in places, Barrichello switched to slicks to set the pace with 1m 34.455s, while Button only jumped from 15th to fifth in the last seconds. Those who didn’t make it were BMW Sauber’s Nick Heidfeld on 1m 42.310s, Renault’s Fernando Alonso on 1m 42.318s after an earlier spin had hurt his chances, Nakajima on 1m 42.500s, Toyota’s Jarno Trulli on 1m 42.771s, and Williams’ Nico Rosberg on 1m 42.859s.

Q1 had already weeded out BMW Sauber’s Robert Kubica (1m 32.190s), Toro Rosso’s Sebsatien Buemi (1m 32.251s), Force €ndia’s Giancarlo Fisichella (1m 32.402s), Toyota’s Timo Glock (1m 32.423s) and Sebastien Bourdais in the second Toro Rosso (1m 33.559s).