Giedo van der Garde takes pole

Caterham Racing’s Giedo van der Garde has broken Davide Valsecchi’s stranglehold on qualifying this season by taking pole for the feature race in Bahrain later today.  He will have to keep his wits about him, however, as Valsecchi, who dominated this circuit last weekend, lines up just behind him in 2nd.  Van der Garde’s lap of 1:42.451 was faster than Davide Valsecchi by 0.145 seconds, who in turn was only 13 hundredths of a second faster than Fabio Leimer.  At one point it looked as though van der Garde might be denied pole, as the Dutch driver was under investigation by the stewards for running wide on the exit of the final corner, as was Stefano Coletti, but it was adjudged that neither driver had gained an advantage from their excursions from the track.

One of the surprises of the session was the speed of the Lotus GP drivers Esteban Gutiérrez and James Calado, who qualified in 13th and 22nd respectively.  The team had opted to save their tyres for qualifying by not running in practice, but this did not pay off, and a mechanical problem for James Calado dropped him further down the grid.

Carlin had a good qualification session.  Max Chilton, who had been fastest in practice, qualified 4th, with his team-mate Rio Haryanto just behind in 5th.  Luiz Razia, currently 2nd in the championship, qualified 6th.

Grid for Bahrain Feature Race

1. Giedo van der Garde 1:42.451
2. Davide Valsecchi 1:42.596
3. Fabio Leimer 1:42.619
4. Max Chilton 1:42.628
5. Rio Haryanto 1:42.691
6. Luiz Razia 1:42.839
7. Rodolfo González 1:42.951
8. Dani Clos 1:43.080
9. Marcus Ericsson 1:43.124
10. Tom Dillmann 1:43.163
11. Felipe Nasr 1:43.172
12. Stefano Coletti 1:43.206
13. Esteban Gutiérrez 1:43.213
14. Brendon Hartley 1:43.219
15. Fabrizio Crestani 1:43.311
16. Nathanaël Berthon 1:43.328
17. Jolyon Palmer 1:43.391
18. Fabio Onidi 1:43.447
19. Nigel Melker 1:43.453
20. Johnny Cecotto 1:43.599
21. Julián Leal 1:43.659
22. James Calado 1:43.757
23. Simon Trummer 1:43.929
24. Stéphane Richelmi 1:44.100
25. Ricardo Teixeira 1:44.850
26. Giancarlo Serenelli 1:45.036

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