Horner: Tremendous team result
Red Bull boss delighted after dominating qualifying
By William Esler. Last Updated: 06/10/12 8:47am
Red Bull chief Christian Horner was delighted with what he described as a "tremendous team result" after the World Champions locked out the front row for the Japanese GP at Suzuka.
The team have been formidably fast all weekend and Sebastian Vettel was comfortably quickest throughout all three qualifying sessions.
Horner was impressed by the pace both his drivers showed, with Mark Webber securing second on the grid, but felt both could have gone quicker had they not had to abandon their final flying laps because of yellow flags.
"It is a tremendous team result," Horner told Sky Sports F1.
"To lockout the front row and take our fourth pole in a row at this track it is a great result It is a great team performance to have both Seb and Mark up there, in fact they were both going quicker when the yellow flags came out on the last lap, so it was a shame in some respects not to see the final outcome.
"The drivers and their cars have been in total harmony all day, they have great confidence in the car around here. I think we were very competitive today, but there were a lot of drivers out there who qualified on scrubbed tyres. We got through qualifying only having used just one set of the soft tyres and that gives us that banker lap in the first few minutes of qualifying.
"It is important we convert these really encouraging grid slots into good points. So it is very important we capitalise on this tomorrow. Anything can happen in the race - we have to get the starts right, the strategy right, making sure that the pace is there, that we have good (tyre) degradation - so there are so many other factors that your mind already switches to."
Whilst the Red Bull boss admitted that the characteristics of the Suzuka circuit suited the RB8, he was quick to point out the car was also on the pace at the very different Singapore street circuit.
"The nature of the track here is very different," Horner added. "It is a case of subtle developments everywhere and working on the detail. The cars have been competitive not just here, they were competitive in Singapore as well. That only counts for today though, the front row, we have to do the job again in the race tomorrow, but it is really encouraging to have the front row locked out."
Vettel's pole was the 34th of his short career and moves him into outright third in the all-time standings.
Front row lock-out
"It is an incredible achievement at just 25-years-old," said a proud Horner. "He was tied on 33 with Jim Clark and Alain Prost and today he has moved into a clear third place, only behind the late, great Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher. It is an incredible achievement for somebody that you forget is so young."
For Webber, the session was a welcome return to form on a Saturday, having not been on the front row since the British GP in July and Horner says the Australian has been showing good pace all weekend.
"He has looked very quick all weekend. He enjoys this track. He has always been competitive here and it was a great performance from him today. It is a shame he didn't get to complete the last lap, but none the less to have both of them on the front row is a fantastic team performance."