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Nic Ladds 8th May 2010 - 15:03

Red Bull - The Untouchables

The crowds turned out in their thousands under the Spanish sun to see home favourite Fernando Alonso do a job in his Ferrari but it was the Red Bull team who stole the show in Saturday's Barcelona qualification session.

Even in the Q2 session where both Red Bull cars were using the less grippy hard compound tyre, Seb Vettel and Mark Webber still managed to put down the quickest times leaving the rest of the paddock in awe.

The Red Bulls simply ruled-the-roost today and with both cars dominating the front row, the team are priced as 1/7 favourites to be the winning constructors with the Cataluña track notoriously difficult to overtake - team tactics should see Red Bull as the winning constructor this weekend.

Behind the front row awaits four drivers who have all previously won the World Championship.

The frustrated McLaren team could only look on as Lewis Hamilton's best efforts placed him third on the grid for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix, one second behind Webber's Pole Position. And as such, Hamilton is priced at 13/2 for victory in the Spanish Grand Prix.

Fourth placed Fernando Alonso was making good use of Ferrari's new F-duct, but almost ended Nico Rosberg's qualification session when leaving the pits for his flying lap.

The Spaniard was clearly looking over his right shoulder when leaving the Ferrari paddock and didn't see the young German driver already exiting the pits on his left side. Rosberg was squeezed out by the Ferrari in the pit-lane and although it had little effect on either driver, it could have so easily have ruined the day for both.

Fernando Alonso is priced at 10/1 for the race win, that is an each-way tempter.

Last year's winner could only work his McLaren up to fifth place today, but Jensen Button (now priced at 14/1) is unfazed by his performance.

Still leading the Driver's Championship 11 points ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton, Jensen knows the end of the season is a long way off and the game has only just begun this season.

"To be honest, I think we have a bit of work to do," he said. "For some reason we can't get the car working and it's not just myself, it's both sides of the garage."
"The Red Bulls look quick, whatever fuel they were running, which is a shame. It's horrible to say but I think they might be untouchable this weekend."

Sharing the third row with the current world champions is Michael Schumacher, who rounds up the pack of champions who sit behind the Red Bulls.

It's very much a good day AND a personal victory for the German veteran, this being the first occasion this season that Schumi has got one over on his younger team mate Nico Rosberg. Nico could only manage P8 and will be right up the gearbox of 25/1 shot Schumacher at the earliest opportunity.

There was talk that this may be Schumacher's last weekend if the improvements to his Mercedes had no effect, but that no longer looks to be the case with the German finally smiling.

Have we finally seen a glimpse of what Schumacher is capable of?

Let's hope to see more good quality from the legend, maybe now we are in the European swing Schumacher will feel more at home.

Rounding off the top-ten is 66/1 shot Felipe Massa - who really couldn't hope for much better considering the opposition, and Kamui Kobayashi whose top-ten finish will please BMW Sauber-Ferrari bosses.

Other talking points saw Adrian Sutil of Force India fame fail to get through to the final qualifying session for the first time in his 2010 season, with shock-of-the-day Rubens Barrichello extremely disappointed at being unable to make it though the first session.

So the Spanish Grand Prix is looking like Red Bulls' for the taking, although I'd have to fancy Vettel (11/8) to get the better of Mark Webber (6/5 fav).


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