Motorsport: Webber produces flyer to grab pole
Mark Webber yesterday became the first Australian since the three-times world champion Jack Brabham 43 years ago to claim pole for the Monaco Grand Prix.
Webber produced a stunning performance to preserve Red Bull Racing's phenomenal record this season of being on pole at every race, posting the only lap this week under 74 seconds with a blistering 1:13.826 around the principality's tight, twisty streets. It is the 33-year-old's second pole in eight days after his lights-to-flag triumph in Spain last Sunday, his third this season -- he now shares top billing with teammate Sebastian Vettel -- and fourth of his career.
"This will probably sink in a little bit later," said Webber. "It's a sensational place to get pole position, and it's such a big result for us to get that here knowing this venue has been so hard for us in the past. It's fantastic. But I've two hours' work to do, so I'm under no illusion it's going to be handed to me on a plate."
Webber finished a quarter of a second quicker than his nearest rival, the surprise package of Robert Kubica in his Renault. The Pole, who will now start from the front row for the first time since the 2008 Canadian Grand Prix, was top at one point in the closing 10-minute shoot-out. He prevented another Red Bull lock-out of the front row because as in Spain Webber and team-mate Sebastian Vettel start first and third.
Behind Vettel comes Ferrari's Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton in his McLaren, with last year's winner and reigning champion Jenson Button down in eighth.