Formula One

Heavy rain delays qualifying for Australian GP until Sunday

Melbourne, Australia (Sports Network) - Qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix was delayed until Sunday morning due to a torrential downpour at Albert Circuit Park.

The rain had eased up to allow for the completion of Q1, but another downpour and daylight fading forced FIA race stewards to postpone Q2 and Q3 until the next day. The start of Q1 was delayed for 30 minutes.

The remaining two segments of qualifying for the Formula One season-opener in Melbourne is slated for 11 a.m. ET (8 p.m. ET/Saturday), which is six hours before the scheduled start time of the 58-lap race.

Six drivers were eliminated after Q1: Marussia drivers Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton and the Caterham duo of Giedo van der Garde and Charles Pic as well as Williams' Pastor Maldonado and Esteban Gutierrez from Sauber.

There were numerous incidents during Q1 due to the poor weather conditions. Felipe Massa from Ferrari damaged his front wing when he spun and hit a barrier. Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull's Mark Webber spun around and went off course as well. Hamilton and Webber did not sustain any damage to their cars.

Mercedes' Nico Rosberg led the way in Q1, followed by Fernando Alonso from Ferrari and Lotus's Romain Grosjean, who had the quickest time in final practice. Three-time defending world champion Sebastian Vettel was seventh. The Red Bull driver was quickest in the first two practice sessions held on Friday.

The last time qualifying for a F1 grand prix was delayed for a day occurred in 2010 at Suzuka, Japan.

03/16 07:24:17 ET

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