- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford flubs daylight saving time advice: ‘Turn your clocks back’
- Americans don’t support sending U.S. troops to Ukraine
- Florida lawmakers move to wipe corrupt ‘Boss Hogg’ town from map
- N.C. math whiz to unveil secret of March Madness picks
- An appealing offer: Chiquita merges with Fyffes to make world’s largest banana firm
- Amnesty International says Syria guilty of war crimes for food blockade
- Mitch McConnell on beating tea party: ‘We are going to crush them’
- Adam Lanza’s dad: He would’ve killed me ‘in a heartbeat’
- North Korea holds election: 100% turnout, Kim Jong-un gets — 100% of vote
- Gentlemen, start your drones: Judge’s ruling opens door for commercial use
Rain forces F1 Australian GP qualifying to Sunday
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA (AP) - Qualifying for the Formula One season opener will be completed Sunday after a series of rain delays and darkness prevented the running of second and third sessions Saturday.
A wet first session of qualifying was completed after a half-hour delay, but a succession of delays of Q2 meant it was becoming too dark to hold the remaining sessions.
Both qualifying and race at the Australian Grand Prix begin at 5 p.m. local time to satisfy European television audiences.
Race stewards had the option of basing the grid on the Q1 times or completing qualifying Sunday, and chose the latter.
Qualifying on Sunday is unusual but not unprecedented, with the grids for both the 2004 and 2010 Japanese Grands Prix decided on race day due to bad weather on the preceding Saturday.
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh was among those urging stewards to base the grid on Q1 times _ his drivers Sergio Perez and Jenson Button performed above expectation in the session by setting the fourth- and eighth-fastest times, respectively.
“The stewards can decide the grid based on what has already happened or decide to run Q2 and Q3 tomorrow,” Whitmarsh said shortly before stewards announced their decision. “However, it’s a very busy program tomorrow and I’m sure some of the historic events won’t be pleased if they are moved.”
The second session of qualifying will begin at 11 a.m. local time Sunday, making it a long day for teams and drivers with the race set to start six hours later.
“I don’t think it compromises the race, if anything it’s better because you get a bit of a warm-up,” Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton said. “Your body should be more energized and ready for the race so it should be interesting.”
The six drivers who were eliminated in Q1 will be able to arrive at the track later. Maldonado qualified 17th, followed by Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez _ who was among several drivers who spun off the track in Q1 _ Marussia pair Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton, and the two Lotus cars of Giedo van der Garde and Charles Pic.
Australian favorite Mark Webber was fifth in Q1, two places ahead of his Red Bull teammate and triple world champion Sebastian Vettel, with the two separated by Ferrari’s Felipe Massa. Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne was ninth, a place ahead of Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton.
More rain is forecast for Sunday, although it is not expected to be as heavy as Saturday’s downpours.
Taxpayers must pay the freight for over-budget train projects
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Rand Paul wins 2014 CPAC straw poll, Ted Cruz finishes a distant second
- Senate Democrats, Republicans spar over restoring unemployment benefits
- Russia besieges Crimea as U.S. seeks diplomacy; Putin remains undeterred by Obama's sanctions
- Investigators puzzle: How does a 777 jetliner just disappear into thin air?
- As Crimea falls, Obama takes Key Largo golf vacation, Biden hits Virgin Islands
- CURL: Today's GOP really is Reagan's 'Big Tent' party
- SAUERBREY: Taxing Marylanders until they flee
- Adam Lanza's dad: He would've killed me 'in a heartbeat'
- Mitch McConnell on beating tea party: 'We are going to crush them'
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again