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Page last updated at 17:29 GMT, Saturday, 6 November 2010

Brazilian GP qualifying as it happened

LIVE TEXT COMMENTARY (all times GMT)

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By Mark Orlovac

1725: After that breathless session, I'm going for a lie down. There has been so much talk about the Hulk and his future, or not, with the Williams team and he produces something like that. Awesome. Keep an eye on the BBC website this evening for all the reaction from Brazil. I'll be back tomorrow from 1400 GMT for an extended build-up to the race at 1600 GMT, so get all your chat prepared. Have a great Saturday night. See you tomorrow.

Ferrari's Fernando Alonso (5th on the grid): "In qualifying like this you can never make any predictions or expectations, we were struggling with intermediates and with dry tyres it was a difficult circuit to play. Fifth is not pole but we saved a tricky session. The championship is not really in my mind. You can get some strange results but we are concentrating on increasing the gap and if we give away points, making sure it is not too many."

Williams pole-sitter Nico Hulkenberg: "It is amazing. I can't believe it. A big thank you to the team; to go on to slicks was the right decision. I just squeezed everything I could out of the car and tried to stick to all the dry parts of the track."

McLaren's Lewis Hamilton (4th on the grid): "It is better than nothing. I have often started fourth here, it is not my favourite but I can't complain. In qualifying I just got held up on that last corner which is frustrating but we are still in the fight. We have got good race pace and straight speed and I'm happy I can battle in there."

Williams team principal Patrick Head: "Rubens changed to dry tyres first, Nico thought it wasn't good enough but he spoke with his race engineer and followed. He put the hammer down and did the job fantastically. There is no champagne for Saturday but it is fantastic for the team, we are all trying to get back to the front and that will give us fresh impetus."

BBC F1 pundit analyst David Coulthard: "What a great performance. In those changing conditions we saw a lot more experienced drivers making some small mistakes. They were the laps of Nico's life."

Get involved on 606
Muffin McLovin on 606: "Woah, didn't see that one coming. Hamilton a little unlucky in that the guys in front of him all got their laps in after his when the track was dryer, though he wouldn't have beaten Hulk anyway. Should be a feisty battle between the four championship contenders (sorry Jenson, but now it's impossible for you I think) all starting alongside one another."


Get involved on 606
Muffin McLovin on 606: "No fluke. That was just brilliant timing from the Williams team. And F1 is all about the timing."

Twitter
Tiirshak on Twitter: "Mark, I'm stunned. Been watching F1 my whole life and never seen anything like that. On another note, Webber will be chuffed."

Force India's Adrian Sutil: "The tyres are just not working at all, we are getting them graining so there is just no grip and we are oversteering quite a lot. [On a near collision with Vitantonio Liuzzi] It was too close for a team-mate, but he has done it several times this year and he has been all over the place."

McLaren's Jenson Button: "It has been pretty tough all weekend. The car was actually better in qualifying, but on the first lap it was all right and on the second the tyres were too damaged to get a time. But I have qualified further down here and finished all right. It is hard to play a supporting role from there. I'm disappointed. Not as disappointed as last year here, but disappointed."

1707: The Hulk clambers out of his car and gets weighed on the scales with a broad smile on his face. We'll allow him that, shall we, as it is his maiden F1 pole. There are no massive celebrations though, he looks like he does this every week.

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson: "I don't know what they had done to that car. But I think the main thing in that car was the driver. That was a stunning drive. I'm lost for words. You see that in lower classifications, but this is Formula 1, it is the cream of the cream and you don't see moves pulled like that."

1703: The Hulk actually claimed pole with his penultimate lap, before rubbing it in with an improved 1:14.470. Superb. Vettel (1:15.519) starts alongside him on the front row. The second row has Webber (1:15.637) and Hamilton (1:15.747) with Alonso starting from fifth.

1702: Tell me honestly, did you predict that at the start of the day? I'm speechless.

NICO HULKENBERG QUALIFIES ON POLE FOR THE BRAZILIAN GRAND PRIX

1659: Nico Hulkenberg is on provisional pole with a 1:16.373. Incredible. He's got two more laps. Now Hamilton tops the timesheets with a 1:16.274. I can't keep up.

1657: Not a lot to be honest. Kubica flies off the track, spins, but keeps the car going. Hamilton does not improve his time first lap out. This is really, really tricky.

1655: And the dry tyres are being put on. "Now the drivers have to find where the grip is," says Brundle. Kubica is the first driver on the slicks on a flier. Let's see what he's got.

1653: "It must be getting awfully close to dry tyres now, that's a tough decision for someone to make," says Brundle as Alonso sets a 1:17.794. He is soon beaten though by the likes of Hamilton (1:17.212), Schumacher (1:17.250) and Vettel (1:17.433). Alonso improves to a 1:17.471 to go fourth.

1650: All aboard for Q3. Martin Brundle wonders if anyone will take a risk and go onto the dry tyres. There are certainly dry lines on the track now. Alonso is out first.

Twitter
Ferrari on Twitter: "Felipe had some traffic in the first lap so he struggled until the end to get a place in Q3."

Twitter
BBC Sport's Sarah Holt on Twitter: "Button won the title after starting 14th on the grid & finishing 5th here last year but he needs 1st or 2nd tomorrow to stay in title race."

1645: The other drivers failing to make Q3 are Kobayashi, Rosberg, Alguersuari, Buemi, Heidfeld and Liuzzi. "Jenson talked before of no pressure being on him and this will be hugely disappointing for him," says Eddie Jordan.

1643: He does it. Massa sets a 1:19.200 for 10th and Button drops out in 11th. That's a big, big blow. His very slim title hopes have just got a lot slimmer. Webber was fastest, followed by Vettel, Kubica, Hamilton and Schumi.

1641: Crikey. This is lively. Massa drops down to 12th as a host of drivers set hot laps. Schumacher is up to fourth. Button is on a tightrope in 10th. Tense times. Here's Massa again...

1639: Massa coming around on a flier now... and he sets a 1:19.433 to move up to eighth. "He has a lot of work to do if that is his best shot on a brand new set of tyres," says BBC F1 analyst Martin Brundle. "Maybe the used set is a better option."

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz:"A brand new set of intermediate went on Massa's car but nothing else. They put a slot gap cleaner into the front wing to check that all parts of that are running OK. They will be hoping that he finds some speed over the last part of this session."

1637: Alonso is out of the top 10 but not for long, he posts a 1:19.010 which is good enough for third. Vettel sets a 1:18.839 to go fastest. Massa and Button are in trouble. Four minutes to go.

1633: ... and Aussie Grit trumps that time with a 1:18.851. Kubica up to second (1:19.131). Hamilton is fifth (1:19.384) and is then told that his McLaren team are thinking of putting on dry tyres. Lewis does not agree. "It won't be dry enough," he says. He then comes in for a set of intermediates with that blinking pit-lane alarm going off again.

1632: After you, Claude. Vettel is now top (1:19.218) with Rubens second (1:19.384) and Kubica third (1:19.677). But here's Webber...

1629: "There will be no more rain," Williams tell their driver Rubens Barrichello. Rubens doesn't seem too convinced about that, though. Webber top of the list, a 1:19.694, with Michael Schumacher second on the same time.

1627: Q2 is up and away. Are there going to be any surprises in the next 15 minutes? Of the 17 drivers still remaining, 14 are out on the track already. Finding space out there is going to be crucial.

1627: That's a surprise, EJ and David Coulthard don't agree on something. "I think we'll see slicks by the end of qualifying," says EJ. "No we won't," counters DC. So there we are then.

1624: EJ believes Alonso popping up with a fast lap at the end was significant. "That was a cool thing to do," he says. "Alonso has been turning the screw since Monza and that time will register."

1620: ...and he doesn't do it. He ends up in 18th while he also has a five-place grid penalty for crashing into Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi in Korea. That's a massive disappointment for him. Right at the very end of Q1, Alonso goes quickest with a 1:18.987. The drivers dropping out are Sutil, Timo Glock, Jarno Trulli, Heikki Kovalainen, Lucas di Grassi, Christian Klien and Bruno Senna. Glock ahead of the Lotus drivers there.

1619: Sutil is the man in danger now after Liuzzi sets a 1:20.592 to go above him. He has one last lap to rescue himself.

MarHarInkKurVet on Twitter: "Mark should have a good listen to 'Sad But True' by Metallica."

1614: Webber is now quickest with a 1:19.025, Vettel second with a 1:19.160 then it's Alonso. Alonso has a moment when he brushes the white line coming out of Turn 11. Hamilton isn't happy. "The tyre pressures are too high. They are graining big time," he says over the radio. Liuzzi is in the bottom-seven drop zone at the moment.

McLaren principal Martin Whitmarsh: I think in the case of Red Bull we can all tell from the outside, and from some of the comments from inside, that there seems to be a greater love for the younger driver and the driver they have brought up. This year Jenson very bravely came into a team that some people saw as based around Lewis and I think and hope if you asked him he would feel he had been treated fairly and equally."

1612: Alonso is now told that the rain is getting lighter. "Let's manage the tyres, manage the tyres," says his race engineer Andrea Stella. The weather is so unpredictable that drivers are told different forecasts. Brilliant.

BBC F1 analyst Martin Brundle: "Red Bull have it all to lose. They are the fastest over one lap but when they put fuel on board during practice it seemed closer. In the rain it plays into the hands of Ferrari and others."

1608: Well not if Alonso has any say in it. The Spaniard sets a 1:19.842. Rain seems to be falling a bit more now.

1607: Hamilton is told that rain is coming and that he needs to get in a few laps now. Vettel beats his team-mate with a 1:19.855. Red Bull one-two. Is that how it is going to stay?

1605: It is very busy out there. Lots of traffic. Vitantonio Liuzzi goes sideways but keeps it together, gets back on the track and then almost has Force India team-mate Adrian Sutil smashing into his backside. An early marker for Webber, a 1:19.950.

1600: And we are off. There's a big queue at the pit-lane exit, a bit like Shepherd's Bush green on a Friday evening. Maybe not that bad but you know what I mean. Ted Kravitz reports that the drivers are on intermediates and not full wets.

1556: We are getting telly shots of the crowd and there is a pretty excitable gentleman with a trumpet in the stands dancing along to a pretty funky band. Almost did the same in the office to be honest. Anyway, here's BBC F1 analyst Martin Brundle: "Under extreme pressure, we will see who has the head and who has the touch in qualifying. They will need it."

1553: Not long to go before qualifying starts. Mercedes boss Ross Brawn is being interviewed by Lee McKenzie and he says tyre choice is going to be "pretty tricky". "We only have four sets of intermediates and we have used one set already," he says. "The forecast is for rain halfway through qualifying so the challenge is when to use them."

Former F1 driver and FIA race steward Johnny Herbert:" I think realistically it is down to three drivers, Sebastian is that little bit further back and it is a little harder. It is down to Fernando, Mark and Lewis and I really do hope Mark does it, he has had a fantastic season, but we'll see after this race."

Twitter
edramx on Twitter: "Good morning Mark. My pick for quali is Webber and MP3 will play 'Singing In The Rain'. Best regards from Mexico City."

Twitter
aka_robyn on Twitter: "Looks like it might be time for a native German speaker to have a turn, then. ;-)"

BBC Sport's Andrew Benson in Sao Paulo: "It was a case of contrasting fortunes for the McLaren drivers in final practice this morning here. Team principal Martin Whitmarsh told me: 'Jenson is struggling with too much front locking. Lewis tried both high- and medium-downforce set-ups and was fairly quick on both. With Jenson, we haven't quite got there yet. He's not getting enough temperature into the tyres.' Whitmarsh added that it was extremely unlikely, with a forecast for a dry race, that McLaren would chose to use a full wet set-up in qualifying, as was being discussed before first practice."

1543: There's more video on BBC One as Jake chats with Jenson Button about Brazil last year, when the Briton clinched the world title with Brawn GP. Time goes quickly doesn't it? Button is now with McLaren and is 42 points behind leader Alonso with only two races to go and he needs a lot to go his way if he is to retain his title. Anyway, more from Andrew Benson on McLaren in a moment...

1540: Here's a stat for you, native speakers of Spanish or Portuguese have been on pole for the past eight Brazilian Grands Prix: Juan Pablo Montoya (2002); Barrichello (2003, 2004, 2009); Alonso (2005); Felipe Massa (2006, 2007, 2008).

Red Bull principal Christian Horner:" Obviously a couple of comments have been made and the drivers are under extreme pressure. Mark will use whatever means to put pressure on his opponents and one of his opponents is his team-mate Sebastian. Mark, in his heart of hearts, knows that what he said is not right. He has had support, not just from the guys in the factory in Milton Keynes, but from Austria. It's not great, but we win as a team and lose as a team."

BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Sao Paulo: "Championship leader Fernando Alonso shrugged off worries about Red Bull's practice pace in Brazil as he reminded us that he managed to steal pole in Singapore before waltzing off to a race win. Alonso finished fifth in final practice but on Friday's longer runs, with higher fuel loads in the tank, the Ferrari appeared to have a pace advantage over Red Bull. This is what Alonso has to say about the final stage of the intense title battle: 'Upgrades will be very few between now and Abu Dhabi. All the cards are on the table, we just need to play it better. There is very little to lose for us. The other four contenders, if they do a bad qualifying, it is more a problem because they have to catch us in terms of points. So for us there is less risk."

BBC F1 pundit David Coulthard: "The intermediates are the tyres to use if it stays like this. It is not raining. But just how critical are the intermediates. Does it give you one lap or can you have a few? It's very tricky."

1530: Red Bull team boss Christian Horner is asked about Webber's controversial comments on Thursday. "They are not held against him and we will give him all the support we can," he says. Oh to have been a fly on the wall in the Red Bull motorhome when they chatted through things yesterday.

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali on the title battle: "The feeling [among other people] is now we've done everything that we have to do, but we have done nothing yet. Red Bull are a fantastic team, it's a fantastic car and, for me, that we are still here to fight [for the the championship] is a miracle."

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali:" I think that if you listen carefully to the outcome of that [Smedley and Massa] interview you will hear what the team means to everyone. We have a personal relationship in a professional environment."

1523: There's a great video package on BBC One with Felipe Massa and his race engineer Rob Smedley. They chat about the 'Fernando is faster than you' overtake-gate moment in Germany as well as the Brazilian's victory here in 2008, when Lewis Hamilton managed to finish fifth after overtaking Timo Glock to win the world title. "We were world champions for about five corners until Timo Glock decided to throw in the towel," says Smedley ruefully. "Thanks for that." Ouch.

BBC Sport's Andrew Benson in Sao Paulo: "With all the speculation about Mark Webber's future here, I grabbed a word with Red Bull team principal Christian Horner just now to ask him whether the team were thinking about a split following the Australian's critical comments this weekend. He said: 'There is no doubt in our minds that Mark will be driving for us next year. We've provided him with a great car and lots of support. He's got a contract. Why would he want to be anywhere else?'"

Get involved on 606
superphysics on 606: "Dunno about Webber's MP3, but Hamilton's is probably playing 'Going The Distance', by Cake."

1518: That boy Stefano Domenicali, the Ferrari boss, is a cool customer isn't he? He's all smiles as he chats with EJ in the pit lane. He doesn't look as if he is feeling the pressure of one of his drivers possibly winning the world title tomorrow.

Former F1 driver David Coulthard: "I'm actually a little disappointed that it is wet. I'm hoping for a maximum-pace Grand prix so I want it to clear up ahead of tomorrow. We have had such a special championship and with five guys in contention I want to see them all driving their cars as quickly as possible."

1512: Could Mark Webber upset Vettel today, though? As he mentioned on his website earlier this week, the Aussie has not been outqualified by a team-mate at Interlagos.

1508: Vettel, and Red Bull, have completely bossed qualifying in 2010. The German has nine in the bag already and if he gets another one then he would become the seventh driver to grab 10 poles in a season. Red Bull have taken 14 poles from 17 races and have locked out the front row eight times.

BBC F1 pundit Eddie Jordan: "This is a magic place anyway but when you have five protagonists still in the title battle, it could be a fantastic race."

BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Sao Paulo: "Welcome back to Interlagos where the rain is ominously falling rather heavily just ahead of qualifying, which, you may recall, was delayed by heavy rain in 2009. I have trooped back from the paddock, where the drivers are wisely hiding away while the media - and the odd recognisable face like Eduardo Massa, brother of Felipe - poke out from under large umbrellas. In Brazil, Formula 1 comes second only to football in the hearts of sports' fans and from my seat in BBC HQ I can hear waves of shouts and cheers from the packed stand across the other side of the track. The fans' spirits are undampened and who can blame them? The five-way championship is still to be settled and qualifying for the penultimate race of the season is just around the corner."

Get involved on 606
neish1875 on 606: "Another possible Mark Webber's MP3 player song: (It's Not War) Just the End of Love by Manic Street Preachers - the end of the love affair between Mark Webber and the Red Bull team."

Get involved on 606
UnitedAshes on 606: "Re: Webber. 'You're my best friend' by Queen? Perhaps not... "

Twitter
BBC pit-lane reporter Lee McKenzie on Twitter: "Pouring again, everyone running for cover in the tiny Interlagos paddock."

1459: Here we go, BBC One is about to start. Eddie Jordan, by the way, is wearing a vibrant blue and white paisley shirt today. Nice. Thanks to pit-lane reporter Lee McKenzie for that preview.

BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Sao Paulo: "Rookie team Hispania look to have secured their future after announcing in Brazil that they have a new financial backer. Spanish businessman Juan Villalonga has teamed up with owner Jose Ramon Carabante to stabilise the team and attract new sponsors. After taking another swipe at the new teams - Virgin Racing, Lotus and Hispania - in the build-up to Brazil, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone is understood to be right behind the Hispania deal. He said in Brazil: 'We need the teams if they are financially sound.' One of Hispania's priorities will be to sort out their driver line-up after using four drivers in 2010. Bruno Senna would say no more on his home turf in Brazil other than that he is concentrating on the final two races, while Karun Chandhok, who started the season alongside Senna, is understood to have broken his ties with the team. Sakon Yamamoto, who replaced Chandhok from the German Grand Prix, has lost his place here to Austrian Christian Klien, who also drove in Singapore."

Arrday on Twitter: "Race predictions... McLaren one-two, Vettel third, Webber and Alonso to collide, would definitely spice things up more."
Is that what you think will happen, or what you hope will happen?

1450: The esteemed Andrew Benson has just informed me that it is now starting to rain quite heavily again at Interlagos. Will the conditions lead to the same chaos as last year? Qualifying in 2009 took two hours and 40 minutes, had Rubens Barrichello claiming pole for Brawn with then team-mate Jenson Button not making it out of Q2 and Seb Vettel failing to get through Q1.

BBC Sport's Andrew Benson in Sao Paulo: "Renault have been looking for a title sponsor all season, and it appears that they have found one for 2011. I understand that the Proton car company will become Renault's title sponsor, and they will use that deal to advertise the Lotus brand. It seems the cars will probably be called Lotus Renaults. Which raises some interesting questions. Will people call them that? After all, McLaren and Ferrari are very rarely referred to outside their marketing department by their title sponsor names. Either way, the team currently called Lotus will be called something else next year."

Twitter
eggomelettee on Twitter: "If someone messes up this weekend, it'll be Webber. And he'll take out Vettel. Webber's too highly strung, angry with team."

1445: It's probably worth reminding you where you can watch qualifying at 1600 GMT. BBC One coverage starts at 1500 GMT, while you can also catch it on the Red Button, BBC Radio 5 live sports extra and in the console at the top of this page. And there's me as well too. If you fancy.

jlr1501 on Twitter: "Is it me or does it feel like this is going to be a CLASSIC?"

Text in your views on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide)
Anon via text: "How about 'Leaving On A Jet Plane' or 'Can't Get No Satisfaction'?"

1439: This is the chance for you to get involved with this live text commentary. In case you missed it this morning, I asked for possible songs for Mark Webber's mp3 player following his comments about Red Bull on Thursday and you responded superbly, more of the same please. There's 606, Twitter or text on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide). With all the sport that is going on today, please put F1 before your message so I can pick you out easily. Ta.

1435: Hello to you. All set for qualifying? It does seem to be drying up at Interlagos at the moment. I think I can see dry lines appearing on the track but that might just be my glasses. Apparently there will be rain intermittent rain until qualifying. The clouds in the distance are very, very close to the ground.

1431: That was quick wasn't it? I didn't even have time to finish off my chocolate bar. Welcome back.


1412: I'm going have a very short break. Promise. I'll be back at around 1430 GMT to take you through qualifying. Don't go too far. While you are waiting, Ben Dirs is your man for today's rugger, while Chris Bevan is in charge of Saturday's soccerball. See you soon.

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson: "Qualifying will be even closer in wet conditions. I want it to stay like this."

Chequered flag
1401: That's your lot for FP3. Robert Kubica ended up top of the timesheets, with Vettel second and Hamilton third. Right at the very end of that session, Button was complaining that the car was too balanced towards the front for his liking so there will be some work to do in the McLaren garage in this little break then.

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz:"Sebastian Vettel has gone out on a final qualification practice really late on while Mark Webber is sat at the back at the garage and you have to presume he is happy with the performance of the car and doesn't want to risk anything."

1358: Renault's Robert Kubica goes fastest with a 1:19.191, then it's Vettel (1:19.500) and Hamilton (1:19.536). Webber seems to have done his work for the morning as he is still in the Red Bull garage.

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson: "Qualifying is an art. It gives you a massive rush. I would compare it to a fight. To get that one lap, it's do or die. I loved it."

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz:"I think what we are going to get from qualifying is on and off showers and I'd be surprised, with the moist air down here and the lack of warm-up races, if the track is going to dry out enough to take slicks."

1352: Not long to go now. Kravitz reports that it is not raining at the moment, even though the weather radars on the pit lane are all saying that it is. Weird. There are lots of black clouds around, though.

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz:"I think Martin Whitmarsh is quite glad they still have 10 minutes left because they still have something to learn. Most of the other teams are sitting in the pits waiting to do their qualifying simulation."

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson: "I think that with approach that Ross Brawn took with the Brawn team last year, Mercedes could really hit the ground running in 2011. You really can build a big advantage with the limit on testing. You can see how long it takes for the other teams to catch up with the Red Bulls this season."

rrengland3 on Twitter: "I know I've done far too much maths when I think FP3 is a module and not a practice session!!"

1341: Just as I was thinking that Seb Vettel was being a little quiet, up he pops with a 1:19.500. Massa still second, Alonso third. Anyone for a Red Bull pole?

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz:"McLaren aren't convinced that this high downforce rear wing is going to work, so Hamilton wants to try out the Button style wing, make a back-to-back comparison and then have a look at the data and then make a decision going into qualifying."

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz: "Mercedes are relishing these wet conditions because their car, like the Renault and McLaren, is one of those that works well in the wet. They were certainly disappointed that Mark Webber took out Nico Rosberg in Korea a fortnight ago as they went to a full wet set-up. Michael Schumacher has just made a couple of changes to his front two torsion bars and the engines are helping them on this power track too."

Get involved on 606
MUFC_4_E3VER on 606: "This is what Vettel and his crew sing to Webber when they win. 'Don't you wish your team-mate was fast like me, dont chaaaaa'"

evklinken on Twitter: "How about Everyday I Love You Less And Less - Kaiser Chiefs?"

1333: That's good timing Felipe. Have you been reading this text commentary? The two-time Brazilian GP winner goes fastest with a 1:19.735. A quick reminder that there were a couple of problems for Ferrari yesterday, with Alonso's old engine blowing up at the end of FP1. The team said that it was at the end of its life anyway, and was due to be changed between FP1 and FP2.

BBC Sport's Andrew Benson in Sao Paulo: "For years, there has been a sweepstake organised in the F1 paddock in which engineers, drivers, even Bernie Ecclestone, all put in 10 Euros and predict the grid, the top five in the race and who will finish 11th. Interestingly, this is apparently the first weekend all season that Felipe Massa has bet on himself to be in front of Ferrari team-mate Fernando Alonso."

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson:" One minute, 20 seconds is the lap time to remember - if the best times are up around there it is perfect for intermediates, any more though and I think it is time for the full wets."

1329: And here's Alonso with a 1:20.200 but he soon improves to a 1:19.791. Hamilton goes second (1:19.912) with Webber third (1:20.337). "These are perfect intermediate conditions at the moment," says Anthony Davidson. Renault's Robert Kubica is the only driver not to have set a time as yet.

Markoza84 on Twitter: "I hope McLaren can take this gift from heaven! Hope will raining in sunday too."
You may not want to hear this but the forecast is for a dry race.

1324: The Hulk improves to a 1:20.535 with Webber in second after a 1:21.366. Hamilton and Button are third and fourth. Kravitz says Massa was the only one of the leading drivers out on the circuit with the full wet tyres on but that he has now come in to change to the inters.

Get involved on 606
StevesKnees on Twitter: "How about 'Anything you can do I can do better'?"

Tmwakesi on Twitter: "For Webber's mp3... Leave by Jojo... especially the chorus part."

1319: Williams driver Nico Hulkenberg sets the fastest time so far, a 1:21.976, then it's Vitaly Petrov (1:22.298) and the Toro Rosso of Sebastien Buemi (1:22.221).

BBC Sport's Andrew Benson in Sao Paulo: "The pressure in the F1 title chase has been building for months, but it has moved on to another level again here at Interlagos, particularly at Red Bull. Already the stress on that team was huge as they rue having the best car but not capitalising on it fully. And Mark Webber's comments about the team being more emotionally behind Sebastian Vettel than him, and about him being an "inconvenience", have increased the scrutiny and laid bare once again the rift at the team. On Friday, Webber stirred the pot again. Asked about rumours he could quit the team he was equivocal: 'There's a good chance I'll stick around to have another crack at it.' Why would he say that when he signed a new contract only in the summer? Webber's not saying."

1312: We have a couple of times now. Virgin Racing's Timo Glock sets a 1:24.642 with Heidfeld posting a 1:31.815. Tell you what, the alarm which pulses every time a car comes down the pit lane is actually quite annoying. That's all.

Pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz: "The thinking at McLaren is that they will not get anywhere near the front row of the grid if they try and compete as normal with the Red Bulls so let's put a completely wet set-up on Lewis Hamilton's car and see if we can break into the front row. They will then hope that something happens, a quick, sudden shower tomorrow or something. Sure it will affect the race performance, but it is worth the gamble."

Twitter
anku_thakur on Twitter: "Since it is raining, Alonso has got a real chance of the pole position, and maybe a win tomorrow... "

1308: Every driver has completed an installation lap. Holly Samos reports that Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton are running different set-ups in practice. Hamilton is going with a higher downforce rear wing, with Button going with the older rear wing.

Pit-lane reporter Holly Samos: "I was just chatting to Johnny Herbert who is one of the FIA chief stewards this weekend and he is hoping that it will be nice and dry tomorrow which it is supposedly forecast to be. I was speaking to one of the guys who has worked here for 35 years. He said if the rain is coming in over Turn One it will rain all day, but if it is raining from the other end of the circuit then it will pass. I just can't tell where it is coming from at the moment!"

1300: We are off. There's plenty of spray coming off the back of the cars as they plot their way around Interlagos. Sauber tell Nick Heidfeld that this light rain will continue for the next 30 minutes before improving for the rest of the session.

BBC F1 analyst Anthony Davidson: "The track at the moment is in a fairly good condition for intermediates but with only four sets of the inters available, I doubt they will do much running."

1257: Who are those people Sarah? Let me at them. Unless they are bigger than me. Which wouldn't be hard. Coverage is now up and running on the Red Button and BBC Radio 5 live sports extra. And there's Niki Lauda in a waterproof poncho. Which is nice.

BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Sao Paulo: "Orlo, there have been people who have laughed at me for packing a winter parka for the Brazilian springtime but it came into its own as Sao Paulo's skies opened on Friday night. The ferocity was the equivalent of having buckets of water thrown over your head. Plastic poncho sellers were urging fans to prepare for the worse today as they sold their wares on the long and winding route up to the track. So can we expect qualifying at 1600 GMT to be heavily hit by rain as it was in 2009? Well, every driver I spoke to after Friday practice was expecting running to be wet on Saturday and it has been raining steadily this morning. Renault driver Robert Kubica predicted it could be 'a lottery' if it rains at Interlagos - and that will be good news for Ferrari and McLaren who are looking to close the gap Red Bulls comfortably pulled out in Friday practice."

1252: Despite the internal strife at Red Bull, on the track they are still pretty ominous, with Vettel and Webber dominating the first two practice sessions. Alonso was close behind in second practice, with McLaren's Lewis Hamilton fourth and the other title hopeful, Jenson Button, in seventh. But that was under blue skies and warm temperatures. Grey and damp is more the order of the day at the moment. Track temperature is 22C.

Get involved on 606
robayeit on 606: "For Webber's mp3 player I would put Travis - Why does it always rain on me?"

Twitter
Force India on Twitter: "It's raining heavily now - and predicted to carry on throughout the day. It will ease in intensity but the clouds will remain poised... "

Twitter
Renault F1 on Twitter: "We knew it was going to rain today in Interlagos and it is!"

1247: It goes without saying that I'm going to need all of your chat ahead of this pretty crucial day. There's plenty to talk about, Webber, Fernando Alonso's engines, the weather. Maybe we could think of songs to go on Webber's mp3 player. 'Where Is The Love'? Should I Stay Or Should I Go?' Get in touch via the normal methods, 606, Twitter or text on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide) with FORMULA 1 before your message.

1243: Here's your line-up for today. Third and final practice gets going at 1300 GMT with qualifying at 1600 GMT. Coverage of FP3 is on the Red Button, BBC Radio 5 live sports extra and in the natty console at the top of this page. Qualy is on all of those as well as BBC One, with Jake Humphrey and the boys, from 1500 GMT.

It's raining
1239: A very good morning to you. Welcome to third practice and qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix - the penultimate race of this pretty extraordinary season. Guess what? It's raining in Sao Paulo.

1234: It wouldn't have made pleasant reading for those of a Red Bull persuasion over their bacon and eggs this morning. I presume they get the British papers in Brazil. It certainly has been an interesting few days following Webber's comments on Thursday that Red Bull support team-mate and championship rival Sebastian Vettel more than him. There have been plenty of stories circulating that he will quit the team at the end of the season and yesterday he refused to confirm whether he will stay with the team in 2011. Isn't there a world championship going on as well?

1230: "Webber on way after seeing red." "Webber's remarks incur Red Bull wrath." "Webber complaints lay bare the Red Bull rancour damaging title hopes." Just some of the headlines in this morning's papers. A normal quiet day in the world of F1 then.



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Results

After 60 of 61 laps
Position Driver Team

Race stopped at 60 laps

1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes
2 Germany S Vettel Red Bull
3 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull
4 Spain F Alonso Ferrari
5 Brazil F Massa Williams
6 France J Vergne Toro Rosso
7 Mexico S Perez Force India
8 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari
9 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India
10 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren
11 Finland V Bottas Williams
12 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus
13 France R Grosjean Lotus
14 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso
15 Sweden M Ericsson Caterham
16 France J Bianchi Marussia
17 Great Britain M Chilton Marussia
18 Great Britain J Button (ret.) McLaren
19 Germany A Sutil (ret.) Sauber
20 Mexico E Gutierrez (ret.) Sauber
21 Germany N Rosberg (ret.) Mercedes
22 Japan K Kobayashi (ret.) Caterham

see also
Hulkenberg grabs pole in Brazil
06 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Red Bull dominate Brazil practice
05 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Webber coy over Red Bull future
05 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Brazilian GP practice as it happened
05 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Lotus confirm Renault engine deal
05 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Red Bull favour Vettel - Webber
04 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Massa to assist Alonso title bid
04 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Button may play supporting role
03 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Hamilton happy to chase for title
02 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Williams agree Hispania link-up
02 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
McLaren promise to support Button
29 Oct 10 |  Formula 1
Williams impressed by Hulkenberg
29 Oct 10 |  Formula 1
Vettel not giving up title dream
27 Oct 10 |  Formula 1
Button downbeat on title chances
24 Oct 10 |  Formula 1
Red Bull 'will not favour Webber'
24 Oct 10 |  Formula 1
Alonso wins as Red Bull implode
24 Oct 10 |  Formula 1


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