08/09/12 - 13:00
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Italian Grand Prix
LIVE
Autodromo di Monza • Qualifying
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Qualifying

Follow the Italian Grand Prix live with Eurosport. The race starts at 13:00 on 8 September 2012. Find race results, standings, stats, scores and track info. Keep up with the top F1 drivers and teams including Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Valteri Bottas (Mercedes) and Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing).
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Highlights 
 
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McLaren 1-2 not a huge surprise - but the absence of Alonso from the front is - he looked good all the way through, but whatever happened in Q3 he was way off the pace. Massa outqualifies him, which the Brazilian will have enjoyed. Hope you enjoyed the session - we'll be back at 13:00 UK time for the race to see if Hamilton can convert his pole.

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The top 10: Hamilton, Button, Massa, di Resta, Schumacher, Vettel, Rosberg, Raikkonen, Kobayashi, Alonso

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Hamilton can't improve - but BUTTON CAN! Up to second, so they lock out the front row for the 61st time!

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Massa up to second - front row! Alonso botches his lap and stays 10th!

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Rosberg and Kobayashi don't improve from 6th and 9th.

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Time up: Everyone still to complete their laps...

0' 

Paul di Resta up to second! Super time - though it will still be dropped by five places for his grid penalty...

1' 

Everyone out on track now, but time running out. Alonso has a touch of pressure on him now - just one chance to make it count.

2' 

Rosberg's 1:24.833 is only good enough for P4 - he's then summarily dropped down a place by his team-mate, who posts 1:24.540. Raikkonen behind the pair of them.

3' 

Kobayashi next into the fray, di Resta readying for one run as well.

4' 

Alonso into the pits wihout a meaningful time to his name, while the Mercedes take to the track.

5' 

Button just four-hundredths adrift of Massa, but Hamilton four-tenths quicker - that's a marker from Hamilton - a 1:24.010 is going to take a bit of beating.

6' 

Alonso backs out of his lap - and Massa gets a boost into Ascari as he sails past - 1:24.436 there. That's the early marker.

7' 

Looks like the Mercedes duo and Kobayashi are staying put for the minute.

8' 

Alonso first out, followed by Massa - then the McLarens, with Vettel also out.

9' 

Will it be McLaren on pole for the third time in a row, or can Alonso send the Ferrari-loving crowd into raptures? I think it's flip-a-coin time - there's nothing to separate them.

10'

Here we go - Q3 - 10 minutes on the clock!

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How do you see the final session playing out? You can join me on Twitter to let me know your thoughts @Mark_Eurosport.

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So in the Q3 shoot-out we'll see: Alonso, Button, di Resta, Hamilton, Massa, Rosberg, Schumacher, Kobayashi, Vettel, Raikkonen. All 10 drivers within exactly half a second - but you sense the men at the top had a little extra in hand.

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Eliminated from Q2: Webber, Maldonado, Perez, Senna, Ricciardo, D'Ambrosio, Vergne

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D'Ambrosio and Maldonado both look set to miss out, but the Belgium does improve to 16th. Raikkonen, who was sitting 10th, ducks into the pits without finishing his lap.

0'

Vettel back up to ninth - he looks like he may have done enough - Webber hasn't - he improves to 11th but doesn't have time for another lap...

1' 

Kobayashi now dislodges Vettel from the top 10, moving up to eighth. Over to the German to do something about it.

2' 

Maldonado grabs himself an extra tenth of a second in 9th place, Vettel now behind him in 10th.

3' 

Webber told to discharge all his KERS on the outlap - another Red Bull/KERS issue?

4' 

Top 5 still in the pits - and Schumi in 7th too - the rest are trying to take their top 10 spot.

5' 

Looks like Webber has tried running medium compound tyres and has only improved to 13th. That's a problem. Vettel, currently 9th, could yet join him in being eliminated.

6' 

The track, which demands raw pace, doesn't appear to be suiting the Saubers especially - Perez and Kobayashi have put in some big qualifying efforts this year, but both sit outside the top 10 at present.

7' 

Seven minutes to go and the drivers are heading to the pits ahead of what could be a final run at qualifying in the top 10.

8' 

Hamilton in third, a tenth ahead of Massa. Ferrari and McLaren locking out the front two rows. Rosberg is the best of the rest so far, just a hundredth of a second further back.

9' 

Button 0.013 behind Alonso, but had been ahead at sector two - the last third of the lap is where Ferrari are finding their pace.At the moment, it's hard to see where Webber will find the pace required to escape Q2. He's down in 12th, one below Vettel.

10' 

15 drivers now have timed laps - with just the McLarens to come - would expect those to shoot up towards the top, however.

11' 

Schumacher has a bit of a wobble on the chicane, which is why he comes in about 10 seconds off the pace.

12' 

1:24.668 from di Resta - that's a very decent first effort. Eight drivers come in behind him - not Alonso, however, who now leads with a 1:24.242.

13' 

Massa out just in front of Alonso - a slipstream boost for the championship leader, perhaps? And does he even need it?

14' 

Lots of drivers straight out into the action - the first of them is Paul di Resta.

15'

15 minutes on the board in Q2! 17 drivers must be whittled down to 10 - and if Q1 was gentle, this session will be nothing of the sort.

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Eliminated: Kovalainen, Petrov, Glock, Pic, Karthikeyan, de la Rosa, Hulkenberg

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No - Kovalainen improves on his best, but only by a fraction. The loss of Hulkenberg made it a relatively straightforward Q1.

0'

Time up - over to Kovalainen....

1' 

Marginal improvement for D'Ambrosio, but Kovalainen still has a chance to overhaul him in 17th.

2' 

Webber feels the need to keep running and sits in 14th - not sure it makes a huge difference but it does show that there just doesn't appear to be the pace in the car at the moment.

3' 

D'Ambrosio up - but only to 17th - he has a 0.6 second lead over Kovalainen, who's out on track.

4' 

Button has moved up to third, half a second behind Alonso. Maldonado in eighth. Q1 over for him now - he'll be safe. Now what about the bottom at the foot of the timesheets?

5' 

Hulkenberg back in the pits, and looking pretty miserable - his qualifying is over.

6' 

Hamilton improves to second, just four-hundredths adrift of Alonso - Q1 starting to look a little like FP3, with these two a cut above.

7' 

Most drivers back in the pits now and taking stock - Hamilton and Button carrying on...

8' 

Button eighth, but that time should still come down. Vettel up to sixth, but Webber still ambling around in 13th. Hulkenberg's misfortune and D'Ambrosio's struggles in his first race for Lotus currently see Kovalainen in a position to get a Caterham into Q2.

9' 

Hamilton slots into third place now, but Alonso has brought his best right down to a 1:24.175 - he is just starting to look like the man to beat.

10' 

Lots of decent times from di Resta, who's now set a 1:24.875 - but Rosberg has condemned him to third for now.

11' 

Schumacher has a little run out wide, but currently sitting sixth and looking in pretty good shape. The McLarens are yet to post times, but both are out on track now.

12' 

Di Resta briefly top before Alonso smashes it with a 1:24.540 - that will do very nicely. Half a second clear of the field, with Massa slotting into third. Vettel and Webber not impressive - 7th and 11th so far.

13' 

Rosberg the new leader with a 1:24.209 - ahead of his own team-mate Schumi. Di Resta on the charge, however, as is Alonso.

14' 

Problem for Hulkenberg - he clipped a marker there and seems to have stopped on the circuit. That would be a big issue for Force India. He says it's a gear issue over the radio.

15' 

The Red Bulls are out on track now, as are the Mercedes and Senna in the Williams. Things beginning to hot up.

16' 

Di Resta's 1:25.384 moves into the early lead. A bit more like it. He was third this morning and appears to have a Force India that's dialled in well.

17' 

1:26.7 from Ricciardo to get us off and running - that's a couple of seconds down from the FP3 times earlier today, and about three seconds behind Hamilton's Q1 time this time a year ago.

18' 

Tyre options for the weekend are hard and medium - expect the front-runners to try and negotiate this session on the hards - that may not be too difficult, as there's not been a huge difference between the two compounds so far.

19' 

First our are the Toro Rossos - they've had a car eliminated in Q1 seven times this year - Hamilton, D'Ambrosio and di Resta follow.

20'

Off we go! 20 minutes on the clock, the top 17 drivers will advance to Q2, the slowest seven will be eliminated.

12:55 

Some housekeeping before we race - Paul di Resta is facing a five-place grid penalty for changing his gearbox - while for Lotus there's a new driver in action - Jerome D'Ambrosio steps in for Romain Grosjean, who was suspended for his role in the first-lap crash at Spa last weekend.

12:50

My name's Mark Patterson and I'll be steering you through the qualifying session - if you want to give me your opinion on the events, then why not tweet me @Mark_Eurosport

12:45

The weather in Italy is glorious. It was 27C in FP3, with blue skies, and it looks as if it has warmed up a touch since then.

12:40 

Red Bull have again not looked too sharp on the timesheets so far, but with Vettel and Webber so well-placed in the drivers' standings it would be rash to rule them out of contention.

12:35 

In the practice sessions McLaren and Ferrari have come to the fore, with Hamilton edging Alonso by all of 0.001 of a second in the final practice session this morning.

12:30 

Hello and welcome to live text commentary from qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza!