Given that this is such a power heavy track(I have my doubts), by how much will pole improve at this track? My gut feeling says the margin of improvement over last year will be lower than we've seen so far. Easy one stopper, usually mild conditions, although rain is a possibility, will give a more detailed forecast in a few days.
There is one high speed turn and it's easy flat, even with previous generation cars. The rest of the turns are short medium speed turns that don't put much energy in the tires save for braking and traction.
The people that badmouth the layout simply suck at it, but it's a very difficult circuit to nail perfectly, you always feel like you could have gone faster. Power is important no doubt, but braking stability, a good front end that can pitch into the apex and good traction out of corners is equally if not more important. Alonso was best of the rest here last year, the one thing the McLaren had was braking stability, and a pointy front end.
I don't see pole being much faster than high 1:34.