LIVE: British Grand Prix… follow all the Formula One drama from Silverstone
13:05 GMT, 8 July 2012
Fernando Alonso will start on pole for the British Grand Prix after mastering the conditions in yesterday's rain-hit qualifying session.
But it was a day to forget for the McLaren duo of Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button who could manage only eighth and 18th to the disappointment of the home crowd.
Stay tuned for all the action, and get involved by sending me an email or by directing your Tweets to @PhilDuncanF1
Click here to follow our dedicated Formula One service on Twitter British Grand Prix: Lap 38 of 52
Fernando Alonso leads from Mark Webber
Lewis Hamilton is P8
Jenson Button in 13th
Di Resta retires after contact on first lap
Lap 37: Fastest lap from Webber again… surely Ferrari will have to react.
Lap 36: Another hot lap from Webber. Can the Aussie hunt down Alonso here He's 20 seconds adrift of the Spaniard who is yet to pit.
Lap 35: Grosjean makes his move at Brooklands as Hamilton slips back to P8. A poor day for the Brits, so far. Massa is in for his second stop as Webber sets the fastest lap of the race.
Lap 34: In comes Raikkonen from P2 for the harder tyre and Schumacher is in, too.
Lap 33: 'Grosjean is much faster than me', is the message from Hamilton as Webber comes in for his second stop of the day promoting Massa to second and Raikkonen to third.
Lap 32: Grosjean is putting Hamilton under intense pressure and it's the Lotus which is looking like the quicker car.
Lap 31: Button stands his ground and holds up Hamilton, but Lewis finally makes his move on the approach to Copse, and Grosjean follows suit through Maggots. In comes Button for his second stop of the day.
Lap 30: Great move from Hamilton who passes Rosberg, and Grosjean sails past, too. Button up next for the pair of them.
Lap 29: McLaren are happy with Hamilton: 'We've exited ahead of Grosjean, and he was the target', Lewis is told. 'We've got 23 laps to go and we're not stopping again. Your'e doing a great job.'
Lap 28: The top 10 is evenly scattered here as Hamilton comes in for his second stop of the day after only eight laps on the softer tyre. He comes out behind Rosberg, there. Let's see how this one plays out.
Lap 26: Alonso's lead over Webber is up to almost six seconds and he's looking very good for back-to-back wins at Silverstone.
Lap 25: Fastest lap of the race from Raikkonen, who is in clear air after passing Schumacher, and the Finn is bringing Hamilton with him. Alonso leads from Webber, Vettel, Massa, Raikkonen, Hamilton and Schumacher. Button is running in P12.
Lap 24: The Mercedes of Schumacher is struggling here, and Raikkonen goes around the outside on the run into Brooklands before Hamilton makes his move at Copse, leaving Schumacher, who started in P3, down in seventh. Quite damning comments from Perez there, by the way.
Lap 23: Here's Perez on his collision with Maldonado: 'He's a driver that doesn't respect the other drivers. That is just a matter of fact. I don't understand the way he is driving. The last three or four races he has done something. He has not respect.'
Lap 22: They've taken a bit of flak for their pit-stop work this term but kudos to McLaren whose stops for Button and Hamilton are the quickest of the day, at 2.8 seconds.
Lap 21: And here comes Hamilton from second place for his first stop of the day. It's a good stop from the McLaren boys, and Hamilton is in P7 behind Schumacher in fifth and Raikkonen on P6.
Lap 20: Hamilton is already 2 seconds behind Alonso… surely it is time for McLaren to call the Hertfordshire-born racer in
Lap 19: Great action between Alonso and Hamilton as the pair enjoy a bit of a ding-dong for the lead. Alonso takes Hamilton who then promptly regains the lead before running a notch wide and allowing Alonso through. Stellar driving from both drivers there, but how long can Hamilton go on this set of tyres
Lap 18: Button is setting PB after PB on the softer tyre as Hamilton continues to hold off Alonso.
Lap 17: Hamilton leads the British Grand Prix, and he is told to 'push' and 'not worry' about Alonso. He's a mere second ahead of Alonso, who has pitted, of course.
Lap 16: Button, struggling on the hard tyre now, is swallowed up by Massa. How long can the McLaren man last here He's a sitting duck at present, and no surprises, there's the McLaren boys getting ready for the 2009 world champion. Button takes on the softer tyre as he exits the pits in P12, just behind Nico Rosberg.
Lap 15: Ferrari respond to Webber's pit stop and haul Alonso in for another set of the prime tyre. Vettel moves up to P6 after passing Button on the exit of Stowe.
Lap 14: Button, yet to stop, passes Senna for what is P8 as Webber comes in for a new set of rubber. Purple sectors from Alonso suggests he is still making the prime tyre work. Hamilton, also on the harder compound is now up to second.
Lap 13: Massa and Raikkonen in the pit-lane for a fresh set of rubber which leaves Hamilton in P3. Alonso leads Webber by 5.4 seconds, who is a further six seconds ahead of home-favourite Hamilton. The incident between Maldonado and Perez will be investigated after the race.
Lap 12: Fresh from their first pit-stops, Perez and Maldonado collide. Perez is out and stopped on track as Maldonado limps back top the pits. The Williams man looks to be at fault after having a wobble of oversteer and running into Perez. Let's see what the stewards make of that one. Schumacher comes into the pits for his first stop of the day.
Lap 11: 'We're not sure if somebody hit us but we turned into turn 4 and there was no pressure,' says Di Resta. 'As I brought it back to the pits I damaged the floor quite badly and there was no way I could continue.' As we hear Di Resta on his early retirement, Massa makes his move on Schumacher at Stowe corner to take P3.
Lap 10: Webber is now three seconds behind Alonso as Perez makes a move on Hamilton but has the door firmly closed in his face. Meanwhile, Vettel pits.
Lap 9: Huge train behind Schumacher here. This is really playing into the hands of both Alonso and Webber, and you have to say the Spaniard is looking good for another win at Silverstone. He won here last year, of course. A long way to go, mind. Some 43 laps in fact.
Lap 8: Hamilton is struggling, too. The McLaren man is losing ground to Maldonado in P7. Massa really needs to make a move on Schumacher. He's much, much quicker than the Mercedes at this point in the race. Meawnhile, the message to Hamilton is don't panic… 'Our pace is as good if not better than everyone else in front of us other than Alonso,' he's told.
Lap 7: Massa has a sniff at Schumacher into Brooklands. The German isn't enjoying the opening stint of the race today'. Use KERS in seven and 13,' Massa is told.
Perfect start: Alonso maintains the lead ahead of Webber and Schumacher
Lap 6: Remember Alonso and Hamilton are on the harder tyres, and Lewis is reporting problems with this set of rubber. We'll have to see whether his gamble pays off. It's looking good for Alonso up front.
Lap 5: Alonso leads Webber by just seven tenths as Schumacher comes under pressure from Massa again, with Vettel, Raikkonen, Maldonado, Hamilton and Perez for company. The top nine are separated by just eight seconds.
Lap 4: Replays of the start show a very cautious start from Hamilton, and Di Resta is the second retirement of the day. A big blow to the British star.
Lap 3: And Massa has a sniff at Schumacher into Copse, but the Mercedes man slams the door shut, and the Brazilian immediately comes under pressure from Vettel behind. The pair touch, but there isn't any damage and Massa maintains the place. A breathtaking start at Silverstone.
Lap 2: Great duel between Button, Kobayashi and Grosjean, but the latter limps back to the pits after damaging his Lotus. Button loses out to the Sauber and slips behind the Japanese driver. Massa meanwhile, is all over the gearbox of Schumacher.
Lap 1: Fernando Alonso leads from Mark Webber, with Michael Schumacher tucked in behind. As you were then at the front. Felipe Massa leapfrogs Sebastian Vettel, as lewis Hamilton re-takes Bruno Senna for P8. Jenson Button up to 12th as as Alonso leads Webber by six tenths. Heartbreak for Paul Di Resta who makes his way back to the pits with a right-rear puncture.
1.00pm: Alonso and Hamilton are the only drivers in the top ten to start on the harder tyre. An interesting move from the Ferrari and McLaren drivers. Button also joins Alonso and Hamilton. 'Predicting a dry race throughout', is the message to Michael Schumacher. We're just moments away from the start of the 2012 British Grand Prix.
12.58pm: A kiss and a wave for the camera from Schumacher as he makes his final preparations. He's a more relaxed character these days, isn't he A winner today Not for me… I think the victor will come from Red Bull or Ferrari, IF it stays dry.
12.55pm: 'Engine failure ends Vitaly's race before it's started,' is the official message from Caterham on Twitter. 'Such a shame as he was very positive about today's race. Time now to focus on Heikki'.
12.50pm: Ten minutes until the start of the British Grand Prix, and it looks as though Petrov's race is over before it's even begun. He won't be starting today's race after suffering a mechanical issue on his way to the grid.
In the paddock: F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone walks in the paddock with IOC President Jacques Rogge
12.45pm: 'Sun is shining for the first time,' says Sebastian Vettel in P4. 'There is rain forecast but we don't know when, if and how much, but we will see.' Meanwhile, three-time world champion Sir Jackie Stewart backs Alonso to win if it stays dry.
12.42pm: Let's go down to the grid, and start with the winner of the 2010 British Grand Prix, Mark Webber. The Aussie is in P2: 'It's dry everywhere and it is a slick tyre of sure. Start on whatever you want, so we'll see what people do when the blankets come off. Not much running in the dry so it will be interesting to see how the car balances.'
12.37pm: That doesn't look good for Vitaly Petrov whose Caterham has stopped on track with what appears to be a hydraulic problem. I'll keep you posted on that one.
Famous faces: Hollywood actor Hugh Grant and Rowan Atkinson at today's British Grand Prix
En route to the grid: Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton make way to their drivers' parade
12.35pm: 'Keep it quiet, but there are blue patches appearing through the leaden sky here at Silverstone,' reports Sportsmail's F1 correspondent Simon Cass. ' British Grand Prix.
Centre of attention: Hamilton signs autographs on his way into the track