Felipe Massa had won the Turkish Grand Prix last year and the year before that and on Saturday, he looked on course for a hat-trick of successes when he planted his Ferrari on pole position for Sunday’s race. Ferrari had struggled in practice sessions with their tyre warming – something that Kimi Raikkonen has been saying about even last year – and looked slightly ragged in comparison to the McLarens and BMW. But Massa seemed to have no such problems as he put in a time of 1 Min 27.6 to grab his third successive pole at Istanbul. The McLarens were right behind him but it was the fresh-from-a-crash Heikki Kovalainen who grabbed the second place on the grid ahead of his teammate Lewis Hamilton. Kimi Raikkonen is 4th on the grid but as he himself said, race pace is something the Ferrari are good at so he will look forward to finish on the podium for Sunday’s race. BMW’s Robert Kubica lines up in fifth with Mark Webber in an impressive Red Bull in sixth. Alonso, Trulli, Heidfeld and Coulthard round out the top 10.
With Super Aguri’s exit, Q1 and Q2 saw five dropouts each and the ones to bite the dust in Q1 were the Force Indias of Fisichella and Sutil, Sebastian Bourdais in the Toro Rosso, Nelson Piquet in the Renault and Kazuki Nakajima in the Williams. Timo Glock was looking impressive in Q1 but finished last in Q2 and hence drops out. Joining him were Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg and the two Hondas of Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello.