Belgian GP: Lewis Hamilton tops the times in second practice
Lewis Hamilton topped the opening day of practice for the Belgian Grand Prix, outpacing Formula 1 title rival Nico Rosberg by six tenths of a second in the afternoon.
The 90-minute session was interrupted by two red flags during the first half-hour of running, the first caused by a crash for Pastor Maldonado and the second by Esteban Gutierrez’s spin.
But Hamilton was not fazed by these brief stoppages and was already fastest, four tenths quicker than Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso, before the second red flag.
He then switched to the soft rubber for his performance run, heading out at the halfway point of the session.
By the time Hamilton set his best time, on his first flying lap on the faster rubber, he had slid down to seventh, with Rosberg having bumped McLaren driver Jenson Button off top spot moments earlier.
Hamilton then outpaced Rosberg in all three sectors, a massive 0.445s of his advantage coming in the middle sector, helped by the German having a scruffy lap.
Alonso was third fastest ahead of old team-mate Felipe Massa, the Brazilian Williams driver showing that his team would again be a podium threat here.
Button ended up fifth fastest, 1.470s down, but he set the fastest overall time in sector one, suggesting he was trying a set-up that was low downforce, even by Spa standards.
Valtteri Bottas was sixth fastest in the second Williams, ahead of Daniil Kvyat, with both drivers briefly being classified as high as second thanks to completing their qualifying simulation laps before some of the frontrunners.
Daniel Ricciardo was down in eighth place after completing his first soft-tyre run later than most while work was being done on his front brakes in the pits, jumping from 15th and bumping Kevin Magnussen and Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg down to ninth and 10th.
Adrian Sutil was 12th fastest in the improving Sauber, briefly running as high as fourth before being bumped down the order, behind Jean-Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso, with Sergio Perez down in 13th.
Lotus’ Romain Grosjean complained of the rear end of his car being unpredictable on his way to 14th, just ahead of Kimi Raikkonen.
The Ferrari driver endured a difficult session, with a misfire setting in early on and forcing a lengthy stay in the pits.
He returned to the track in the closing stages of the session, but the car was not able to do any better than 15th.
Marussia driver Jules Bianchi was up in 16th, just 3.587s off the pace, although his position was boosted by several others hitting trouble.
Gutierrez ended up 18th after managing only seven laps before he spun at Blanchimont and being unable to rejoin.
Andre Lotterer continued to impress, ending the session just half-a-tenth off team-mate Marcus Ericsson in 19th place.
Max Chilton, who had yesterday been replaced by Alexander Rossi before earning a reprieve this morning, had sat out the morning session and ended up 20th after his running was hindered by a turbo problem.
Maldonado did not set a time after causing an early red flag when he crashed just after the eight-minute mark.
The Lotus driver drifted onto the grass on the right-hand side of the track run-out of Rivage towards Pouhon and lost control, spearing across the track and heavily into the barrier on the opposite side of the circuit.
But he at least went further than Sebastian Vettel, who was forced to sit out the session as a result of an electrical problem related to the engine in the morning.
This has forced an engine change, which the team did not have the time to do before the afternoon’s running.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m49.189s 26 2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m49.793s +0.604s 28 3. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m49.930s +0.741s 19 4. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m50.327s +1.138s 24 5. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m50.659s +1.470s 31 6. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m50.677s +1.488s 26 7. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m50.725s +1.536s 25 8. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m50.977s +1.788s 16 9. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m51.074s +1.885s 31 10. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m51.077s +1.888s 26 11. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m51.383s +2.194s 26 12. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m51.450s +2.261s 29 13. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m51.573s +2.384s 28 14. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m52.196s +3.007s 25 15. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m52.234s +3.045s 18 16. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m52.776s +3.587s 23 17. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m53.955s +4.766s 7 18. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m54.040s +4.851s 18 19. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m54.050s +4.861s 30 20. Andre Lotterer Caterham-Renault 1m54.093s +4.904s 24 21. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault no time 2 22. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault no time
Belgian GP: Nico Rosberg quickest in opening practice session
Mercedes was fastest in first practice for the 2014 Formula 1 Belgian Grand Prix, with Nico Rosberg outpacing Lewis Hamilton by 0.097s.
As expected, Mercedes-engined cars dominated the top 10, with the ‘works’ cars trading quickest times in the final half hour.
Rosberg topped the timesheets for the first half of the session with a 1m51.724s lap before Hamilton edged ahead, but Rosberg hit back by going another tenth of a second faster.
Hamilton’s race engineer Peter Bonnington informed him that the time came from Rosberg being quicker through the chicane and picking up more mid-corner to exit speed at Pouhon.
Both Mercedes then returned to the circuit in the final minutes but did not improve their times.
Ferrari arrived at Spa with a revised low-downforce aero package and proved to be the fastest non-Mercedes team. Fernando Alonso was especially impressive, third fastest and just two tenths off Rosberg’s benchmark.
Kimi Raikkonen, so often a Spa specialist, continued to fight his F14 T but finished fifth fastest, albeit a second slower than his team-mate.
The Ferraris sandwiched the McLaren of fourth-placed Jenson Button, who survived a brief scare when his DRS stuck open. Button was a comfortable half second faster than team-mate Kevin Magnussen.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was the only other top 10 runner without a Mercedes engine, closing the session in ninth place, behind Magnussen and the two Force Indias of Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg.
Ricciardo’s team-mate Sebastian Vettel was two places adrift after an eventful session. He reported gearshift problems and ran off track at Pouhon, then ran just another handful of laps before returning to the garage with a temperature-related exhaust failure.
Valtteri Bottas was the only Williams driver to finish inside the top 10, seven tenths quicker than team-mate Felipe Massa.
While 1.595s separated P1 from P10, the gap from fastest to slowest on the entire grid was a substantial 6.4s, with the usual suspects propping up the order.
Alexander Rossi, who will not now drive in the grand prix, was over a second slower than Marussia team-mate Jules Bianchi.
It only took F1 debutant Andre Lotterer 10 laps at the wheel of the newly upgraded Caterham to overhaul team-mate Marcus Ericsson, who spun at La Source in response.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m51.577s 25 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m51.674s +0.097s 24 3. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m51.805s +0.228s 16 4. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m52.404s +0.827s 21 5. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m52.818s +1.241s 17 6. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m52.903s +1.326s 24 7. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m52.922s +1.345s 23 8. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m52.937s +1.360s 22 9. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m52.972s +1.395s 19 10. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m53.172s +1.595s 20 11. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m53.369s +1.792s 11 12. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m53.594s +2.017s 21 13. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m53.597s +2.020s 20 14. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m53.703s +2.126s 14 15. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m53.968s +2.391s 20 16. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m54.189s +2.612s 20 17. Giedo van der Garde Sauber-Ferrari 1m54.335s +2.758s 16 18. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m55.336s +3.759s 21 19. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m55.782s +4.205s 19 20. Alexander Rossi Marussia-Ferrari 1m57.232s +5.655s 20 21. Andre Lotterer Caterham-Renault 1m57.886s +6.309s 24 22. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m57.977s +6.400s 24
Quando a Spa ho scoperto Kimi
Credo fosse il 2001.
Stavo per superare i controlli agli ingressi di Melbourne quando mi accorsi che un addetto al circuito stava questionando con un ragazzo biondino.
Costui pretendeva di entrare, asserendo di essere un pilota della Sauber.
L’addetto ghignava e diceva: inventatene un’altra, babbeo.
Io stavo lì e pensavo che le nuove generazioni erano dotate di enorme fantasia.
In effetti, nemmeno io sapevo chi fosse un certo Kimi Raikkonen.
Invecchiato un po’ (io), una domenica di fine agosto del 2004 stavo ad Atene.
Ultima giornata di una Olimpiade spettacolare, anche se foriera di disastri per gli amici ellenici.
La F1 correva a Spa.
Seguivo la finale del volley (Brasile-Italia) e poi la maratona di Baldini.
Del Gran Premio orecchiavo qualcosa, senza vedere niente.
Alla fine mi dissero: ah, Schumi è matematicamente campione del mondo per la settima volta, però sulla pista che ama di più è arrivato secondo. Dietro il Biondino bloccato ai cancelli di Melbourne.
Penso si sappia cosa penso io di Raikkonen, in termini assoluti.
Nutro sincera comprensione per quanti si ostinano a rifiutare il mero dato di cronaca, nonchè statistico.
Ehi, boys and girls, se in 35 anni, dalla fine del 1979 in poi, ci sono solo due esseri umani che possono dire di aver vinto un mondiale di F1 guidando una macchina rossa, I am sorry, fatevene una ragione, perchè questo resta e resterà, a prescindere dal presente e da chi sia meglio oggi, in pista, con macchina rossa o meno sotto il sedere.
Voglio semplicemente aggiungere quanto segue.
Di Schumi a Spa ho raccontato.
Mi taccio su Senna, perchè a Ayrton ho persino dedicato un libro e non pretendo che i fans di oggi condividano le mie nostalgie.
Di sicuro, a parte i due citati sopra, il tedesco e il brasiliano, io sulle Ardenne non ho mai visto uno andare tanto forte come Raikkonen.
E paradossalmente penso al 2008, cioè a una sconfitta, maturata in extremis per circostanze meteo sufficientemente note.
Dopo di che, è vero.
Nel 2014, sulla stessa Ferrari, stiamo 11-0 per Fernando e doverosamente io ne prendo atto.
But I don’t change my mind about Kimi and Spa.
Raikkonen: “The sport is more straightforward now”
Spa-Francorchamps, 21 August – The Spa circuit is famous for its high speed challenge and, at his usual Thursday meeting with the media in the Belgian paddock, Kimi Raikkonen was asked if he regretted the fact the current cars are a bit slower than in the past. “In a way yes, if you think of F1, you’d think we would have everything possible in the car to make them go faster, as it was in the past,” began the Scuderia Ferrari driver. “But obviously, now the rules have changed aimed at making the cars slower, while improving the show. I think the cars looked nicer in the past and were much more challenging to drive and it was more fun in some ways. On the other side, maybe we have more overtaking now, but sometimes I think it would be nice to go back and race with the cars from the past.” When Kimi made his F1 debut there were concerns voiced about his lack of experience, so he is ideally placed to comment on the story of the day, next year’s arrival of the currently 16 year old Max Verstappen at Toro Rosso. “I did one full year, 23 races in a car before coming to F1,” recalled the Finn. “He has probably done more. I did well; time will tell how he will do. The sport is more straightforward now than in the past, the points are given out to more finishers. So I don’t think he will have problems and I hope he does well.” Kimi’s last win at Spa came at the wheel of a Ferrari in 2009, which at the time he described as “a miracle.” He was asked what a victory would represent on Sunday. “It would be a similar story!” he said. “That year, we were one of the few teams running KERS and that was a good help for us here. Hopefully we can have a good weekend overall and a good race, so that we start improving. But here and Monza are probably not the easiest places for us as we are missing some straightline speed, which is very important at this circuit and the next one. I think that the final part of the season can only be better for us, especially as I’ve had a much better feeling from the car at the last two races.”
Da Autosprint n.30 del 29/07/2014:
Raikkonen not expecting big improvement over summer break
Kimi Raikkonen says he is not expecting Ferrari to make a big improvement over the summer break, after finishing in sixth place in today’s Hungarian Grand Prix.
It is the Finn’s best result of the year so far, after starting down in 16th place following a strategy mistake from the Maranello-based outfit.
“Yeah, after yesterday’s mistakes, this kind of place it is hard to place and we were lacking straight-line speed, I had difficulties passing the Sauber in the middle of the race with the DRS so obviously it was a bit tricky but we managed to gain place,” he said when asked if sixth was the best possible result. “We were faster than Williams but I just couldn’t get past.”
He hopes the second part of the year is better, but does not expect a big difference after the summer break. “I hope that the second part of the season can be much better than the first one, but obviously one little bit better day doesn’t change an awful lot,” he explained.
“It doesn’t take away the mistakes and the things we have to really improve, make it work as a team much better. That doesn’t change from this moment to this afternoon; there are an awful lot of things left to be done to make sure we can be where we should be.
“I believe in the team, that we can put ourselves where we should be. There are some signs, today we had good speed but obviously starting where we started, it was hard to make any better place. I don’t think there is going to be a big difference in three or four weeks, but for sure next year. So we try to work more improving things and improve in the second half, make sure things are how we want and should be.”
He believes the cooler conditions helped Ferrari but admitted that the team is nowhere near where it should be.
Alonso’s Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen recovered from 16th on the grid to finish sixth, but the Finn said he took little satisfaction from scoring his best result of the season.
"Sixth doesn’t really give me anything – I’m here to win races," said Raikkonen.
"It’s good points but still nowhere near where we should be. I’m still disappointed.
"We are going in the right direction but there is still a long way to go."
Hungarian GP report: Daniel Ricciardo wins thrilling F1 race
Daniel Ricciardo made two late overtaking moves on Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso to claim the second victory of his Formula 1 career in a dramatic Hungarian Grand Prix.
Alonso looked set to end a 15-month victory drought for Ferrari, but ultimately found a mammoth 32-lap final stint on a set of soft Pirelli tyres too much and thus had to settle for second.
Hamilton reduced the points gap to title rival Nico Rosberg by taking an unlikely podium finish after a pitlane start, just fending off his Mercedes team-mate over the final lap as he battled to the finish on a well-worn set of medium tyres.
Hamilton survived a brush with the barrier after spinning at Turn 2 on the first lap, and also courted intra-team controversy by holding up team-mate Rosberg during his final stint despite radio requests to let him through.
Rosberg dropped to seventh after his third and final stop with 14 laps to go, but charged back to fourth to minimise the damage inflicted by two-stopper Hamilton to his championship lead to just three points.
Poleman Rosberg had dominated the wet early stages, leading Valtteri Bottas, Sebastian Vettel and the fast-starting Ferrari of Alonso, but this quartet had to wait an extra lap before pitting for dry tyres when Marcus Ericsson crashed heavily exiting Turn 3 on lap nine, bringing out the safety car.
This dropped them into the pack behind Ricciardo’s Red Bull and the McLarens of Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen, and not far ahead of Hamilton, who had made rapid progress through the midfield.
McLaren gambled on more rain, so fitted Button with new intermediate tyres and left Magnussen out on his original set. This gambled failed and the McLarens were forced to pit for dry tyres in racing conditions.
A huge crash for Sergio Perez (who had earlier collided with Force India team-mate Nico Hulkenberg) exiting the final corner on lap 23 brought the safety car back out, and Ricciardo and the Williamses of Bottas and Felipe Massa dived for the pits.
This left Alonso in the lead, but the Spaniard’s gamble on a two-stop strategy failed as Ricciardo charged back to the head of the field over the final few laps.
Massa ran as high as second, but switched to a three-stop strategy and made it home fifth, ahead of Kimi Raikkonen, who scored his best result since returning to Ferrari this season by rising from 16th on the grid to sixth.
Vettel ran in the top order early on, but spoiled his race with a frightening 360-degree spin after catching the wet kerb exiting the final corner on lap 32.
The reigning world champion ultimately brought his Red Bull home seventh, ahead of Bottas (who lost out badly in the pits) and the Toro Rosso of Jean-Eric Vergne (who also ran at the front early on).
Button recovered from McLaren’s early strategic blunder to claim the final point for 10th.
Results - 70 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1h53m05.058s 2. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +5.225s 3. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +5.857s 4. Nico Rosberg Mercedes +6.361s 5. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes +29.841s 6. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari +31.491s 7. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault +40.964s 8. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes +41.344s 9. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault +58.527s 10. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes +1m07.280s 11. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari +1m08.169s 12. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes +1m18.465s 13. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault +1m24.024s 14. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault -1 lap 15. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari -1 lap 16. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari -1 lap Retirements: Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 33 laps Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 25 laps Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 23 laps Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 15 laps Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 11 laps Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 8 laps
Drivers' championship: 1. Nico Rosberg 202 2. Lewis Hamilton 191 3. Daniel Ricciardo 131 4. Fernando Alonso 115 5. Valtteri Bottas 95 6. Sebastian Vettel 88 7. Nico Hulkenberg 69 8. Jenson Button 60 9. Felipe Massa 40 10. Kevin Magnussen 37 11. Sergio Perez 29 12. Kimi Raikkonen 27 13. Jean-Eric Vergne 11 14. Romain Grosjean 8 15. Daniil Kvyat 6 16. Jules Bianchi 2 17. Adrian Sutil 0 18. Marcus Ericsson 0 19. Pastor Maldonado 0 20. Esteban Gutierrez 0 21. Max Chilton 0 22. Kamui Kobayashi 0 Constructors' championship: 1. Mercedes 393 2. Red Bull-Renault 219 3. Ferrari 142 4. Williams-Mercedes 135 5. Force India-Mercedes 98 6. McLaren-Mercedes 97 7. Toro Rosso-Renault 17 8. Lotus-Renault 8 9. Marussia-Ferrari 2 10. Sauber-Ferrari 0 11. Caterham-Renault 0
Hungarian GP: Kimi Raikkonen says Ferrari should not make Q1 errors
Kimi Raikkonen says that his Ferrari Formula 1 team should not be making the kind of strategic error that led to him being eliminated in Q1 at the Hungaroring.
The 2007 world champion missed the cut in the first segment of qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix when Ferrari decided to keep him in the pits in the closing stages, and his time was beaten by the Marussia of Ferrari protege Jules Bianchi.
Raikkonen admitted that he was unsure if it was the right decision to not run as he felt happier on the softer tyre compound, but the team believed it had made the right call.
“The plan was to do another run but we never did,” the Finn told reporters after the session.
“The team told me, ‘we are fine, we don’t need to go out’.
“I questioned it a few times but they said there was no need, and obviously we can see the end result.
“As a team in Formula 1, as Ferrari, we shouldn’t make these kind of things. We are not in our first year, any of us.
“It’s not good for me, not good for the team, but mistakes have been made.
“People make mistakes, but obviously there are things we need to change to make it better.”
Raikkonen and team-mate Fernando Alonso were knocked out in the first part of qualifying for the British Grand Prix, with the Spaniard saying afterwards the Scuderia needed to “speed up” its decisions.
When asked if he could have simply overruled the team and demanded to go out, Raikkonen said that he placed his faith in Ferrari to make the right calls.
“I’ve got trust in the team and I believe in the people,” he added. “I questioned it but I cannot go against advice.
“We are here as a team, we make decisions as a team and today the outcome was this.
“I don’t really see the point in shouting around. I’ve done mistakes in the past and will make more in the future.”
Hungarian GP: Rosberg on pole, fire puts Hamilton out in Q1
Nico Rosberg had a clear run to pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix after team-mate Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes caught fire early in qualifying.
Hamilton was the favourite for pole after topping all three free practice sessions, but he was eliminated just five minutes into Q1 when he stopped in the pit entry with the rear of his Mercedes ablaze thanks to a fuel leak.
But although this meant Rosberg’s main rival was not in contention, rain that struck at the start of Q3 made the world championship leader’s task difficult.
Rosberg was the first onto the track on slick tyres with conditions worsening, but with the first corner particularly wet he slid off into the runoff area on his first flier, ruining his lap.
But Kevin Magnussen, who was second on the road, also outbraked himself, hitting the tyre barrier on the outside of the corner and bringing out the red flag before anyone could set a time.
When qualifying resumed after an eight-minute delay, the rain had eased and while the track was slippery, everyone opted to continue on slicks.
With the track drying up, everyone went back out on slicks, with Rosberg going fastest on his second flying lap after a brief spell at the top of the times for Williams driver Valtteri Bottas.
But unlike Rosberg, who stayed out and used only one set of softs in Q3, Vettel pitted for new rubber and took top spot from the Mercedes driver on his final lap.
Moments later Rosberg improved, taking pole position by almost half-a-second.
Vettel held onto second ahead of Bottas, the latter also opting to pit for new tyres, with Daniel Ricciardo fourth fastest.
Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa were fifth and sixth, both also having two runs in the restarted Q3 segment, with Jenson Button eighth ahead of Jean-Eric Vergne.
Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg was the slowest of those to set a time in Q3 in ninth, with Magnussen classified 10th having not set a time before his crash.
Daniil Kvyat was in contention for a top 10 slot, but he locked the rears at Turn 12 on his final lap in Q2 and spun, ending up 11th.
Sauber driver Adrian Sutil was 12th ahead of Sergio Perez, who suffered a hydraulic leak during Q2 and could only attempt one run.
Esteban Gutierrez took 14th ahead of Romain Grosjean, with Jules Bianchi ending up 16th after an excellent performance to make the second stage of qualifying.
Kimi Raikkonen was a shock casuality during Q1, ending the session 17th fastest.
With Hamilton and Pastor Maldonado, whose Lotus had stopped early in Q1, not running, most teams opted not to send their cars out for a second run on the basis that they only needed to finish ahead of the Caterhams and the Marussias to make the next phase.
But Raikkonen was the slowest of those who did not attempt a run on soft rubber and when Bianchi put in his final lap, the Finn was relegated to the dropzone while sat in the garage.
Caterham driver Kamui Kobayashi was 18th ahead of Max Chilton, who suffered a fuel pressure problem on his final run, with Marcus Ericsson slowest of those who set a lap.
Hamilton was classified 21st ahead of Maldonado thanks to starting a flying lap.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m22.715s 2. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m23.201s +0.486s 3. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m23.354s +0.639s 4. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m23.391s +0.676s 5. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m23.909s +1.194s 6. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m24.223s +1.508s 7. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m24.294s +1.579s 8. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m24.720s +2.005s 9. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m24.775s +2.060s 10. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes Q3 cut-off time: 1m24.647s 11. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m24.706s +1.396s** 12. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.136s +1.826s 13. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m25.211s +1.901s 14. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.260s +1.950s 15. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m25.337s +2.027s 16. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m27.419s +4.109s Q2 cut-off time: 1m26.728s 17. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m26.792s +1.851s*** 18. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m27.139s +2.198s 19. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m27.819s +2.878s 20. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m28.643s +3.702s 21. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 22. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 107 per cent time: 1m30.886s ** Gap to fastest in Q2 *** Gap to fastest in Q1
Hungarian GP: Lewis Hamilton edges Nico Rosberg in final practice
Lewis Hamilton cemented his status as favourite for pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix by topping Saturday morning free practice.
The Mercedes driver had a quiet start to the session, not going for laptimes on his early laps on the slower medium-compound Pirellis.
Hamilton was down in 18th place when he went out for his third run, still on the mediums, jumping to eighth fastest on his 14th lap on the rubber and then knocking Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari off top spot by almost three-tenths of a second on his 16th lap.
But with a big step in performance between the medium and the soft-compound Pirellis, the fastest laps were always going to be set on that rubber.
Hamilton had slipped to seventh by the time he started his qualifying simulation, but he set the fastest times in the first two sectors of the lap and then a personal best in the final one to knock team-mate Nico Rosberg off top spot with four minutes remaining.
Rosberg subsequently improved on his second attempt after a cool-down lap, closing the deficit to Hamilton from 0.453s to 0.229s. He then improved again, cutting the deficit to just 47-thousandths.
Sebastian Vettel then went third fastest on his qualifying simulation, four-tenths off the pace, with Valtteri Bottas just shaded to fourth fastest by the second Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo.
Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen, who had been the first of the frontrunners to go out on the soft Pirellis with 10 minutes remaining were briefly first and second after lapping just 49-thousandths apart.
But they eventually slid to sixth and seventh in the final reckoning, just ahead of Kevin Magnussen’s McLaren.
Scuderia Toro Rosso proved it would be a threat for Q3 this afternoon, with Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniil Kvyat ninth and 10th ahead of Felipe Massa and Jenson Button.
Force India drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez were down in 17th and 18th place behind the Saubers and the two Lotus entries, both unable to extract a competitive laptime from the soft rubber.
Kamui Kobayashi continued Caterham’s improved weekend by outpacing the Marussias of Max Chilton and Jules Bianchi, with team-mate Marcus Ericsson 21st after a brief spin at Turn 13.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m24.048s 21 2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m24.095s +0.047s 24 3. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m24.455s +0.407s 16 4. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m24.678s +0.630s 15 5. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m24.685s +0.637s 21 6. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m24.769s +0.721s 11 7. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m24.818s +0.770s 19 8. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m24.867s +0.819s 21 9. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m25.162s +1.114s 17 10. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m25.170s +1.122s 19 11. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m25.231s +1.183s 18 12. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m25.468s +1.420s 14 13. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m25.829s +1.781s 22 14. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m25.859s +1.811s 19 15. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m25.934s +1.886s 21 16. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m26.023s +1.975s 23 17. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m26.035s +1.987s 19 18. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m26.142s +2.094s 17 19. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m27.560s +3.512s 23 20. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m28.083s +4.035s 17 21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m28.605s +4.557s 22 22. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m28.821s +4.773s 14
Kimi Raikkonen: “Evaluate every detail”
Kimi Raikkonen: “In the first free practice session, we managed to do a good job, testing various solutions on the programme and I was feeling reasonably pleased with the handling of the car. Then, in the afternoon, I went out for a second run on the Medium tyres, because the behaviour of this compound seemed worse as the temperature went up and that affected the handling of the car, while on the Soft I had no problems. In the second part of the session I did a race simulation with both compounds: unfortunately when I fitted the Mediums I had a problem with the left rear and I had to pit earlier than planned. The telemetry didn’t show any problem on the car, so I hope that the data will point us in the right direction for the next two days.”
Hungarian GP: Lewis Hamilton stays on top in second practice
Lewis Hamilton dominated the opening day of practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix, outpacing Formula 1 title rival Nico Rosberg.
The Mercedes driver, who earlier topped morning practice, was fastest during the early stages of the session when everyone ran on the slower medium-compound Pirelli tyres.
Red Bull pairing Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo briefly took first and second positions thanks to switching onto the faster softs before Mercedes just after the half-hour mark.
But Rosberg then put Mercedes back on top with his first flier on the faster rubber, while team-mate Hamilton had a scruffy start to his run.
Hamilton then put in two faster laps, first outpacing Rosberg by 0.207s and then improving his best mark by 61 thousandths on the sixth lap of his run.
This was despite complaining several times during the session of struggling with the brakes, saying over the radio early on that “I can’t seem to stop the car”.
Vettel, who had an off at the chicane in the early running, held on to end up the best non-Mercedes in third overall, six tenths off the pace and three tenths up on old title rival Fernando Alonso.
McLaren driver Kevin Magnussen, who ploughed through the gravel at the chicane in the early running, was fifth fastest ahead of Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen, with Ricciardo sliding to seventh as others improved on the soft rubber.
Williams was lower down the timesheets than usual, with Valtteri Bottas eighth ahead of the second McLaren of Jenson Button.
Felipe Massa was 10th after suffering a spin early in his soft-tyre run before a car problem forced him to return to the garage and miss out on some of the planned long-run track time.
Williams engineering boss Rob Smedley was seen examining the left-rear wheel in the garage, suggesting the problem might have been in that area.
Daniil Kvyat and Jean-Eric Vergne was 11th and 12th ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg, who had briefly been third after being the first to try the soft rubber.
Adrian Sutil was the faster of the two Sauber’s ahead of Sergio Perez’s Force India.
Behind them were the two Lotus entries of Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean.
Maldonado suffered a quick spin on his first run, but recovered to complete a full programme, while Grosjean’s running was restricted by the team having to chase a cooling system leak.
Kamui Kobayashi, another to suffer a spin, was 19th fastest ahead of both Marussias and Caterham team-mate Marcus Ericsson.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m24.482s 38 2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m24.720s +0.238s 38 3. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m25.111s +0.629s 33 4. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m25.437s +0.955s 26 5. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m25.580s +1.098s 34 6. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m25.730s +1.248s 30 7. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m25.983s +1.501s 29 8. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m25.999s +1.517s 37 9. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m26.234s +1.752s 33 10. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m26.402s +1.920s 18 11. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m26.689s +2.207s 42 12. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m26.703s +2.221s 37 13. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m26.789s +2.307s 39 14. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m26.919s +2.437s 41 15. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m27.013s +2.531s 39 16. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m27.019s +2.537s 40 17. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m27.021s +2.539s 14 18. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m27.480s +2.998s 32 19. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m28.370s +3.888s 35 20. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m28.469s +3.987s 26 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m28.586s +4.104s 35 22. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m29.036s +4.554s 34
Hungarian GP: Hamilton leads Rosberg in opening practice
Mercedes underlined its dominant position at the front of Formula 1 by comfortably leading the way in the first free practice session for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton beat team-mate Nico Rosberg to the fastest time by just 0.183 seconds, after struggling with his brakes in the early part of the session.
The silver cars were the only ones to lap below 1m26s around the Hungaroring.
Kimi Raikkonen finished up best of the rest in third, six tenths of a second adrift of championship leader Rosberg.
The Finn matched Hamilton in the first sector but his Ferrari fell away across the rest of the circuit.
Raikkonen lapped four tenths clear of Ferrari team-mate Fernando Alonso, who was in turn four tenths faster than reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel in the best of the Red Bulls.
Kevin Magnussen’s McLaren rounded out the top six, ahead of Jean-Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso, the second Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo, and the sister McLaren of Jenson Button.
Felipe Massa was fastest of the two Williams drivers in 10th, while team-mate Valtteri Bottas was only 15th, behind Esteban Gutierrez in the best of the Saubers, Nico Hulkenberg’s Force India, Daniil Kvyat’s Toro Rosso, and Pastor Maldonado in the best of the Lotus.
Hulkenberg’s Force India team-mate Sergio Perez was next, ahead of the troublesome second Lotus of Romain Grosjean, which stopped early with a technical issue related to the car’s water system.
Adrian Sutil was 18th fastest, more than a second slower than Sauber team-mate Gutierrez, but well ahead of the two Caterhams – led by Kamui Kobayashi – and the two Marussias.
There were a number of brake lock-ups and trips across the circuit run-off areas as drivers explored the track’s limits early on, but the most dramatic moment of the session befell Max Chilton as he returned to the pits after his installation lap.
Chilton is hoping his form will improve this weekend, after switching back to a chassis he used before June’s Austrian GP, but the Briton’s session was barely five minutes old when his Marussia caught fire in the pitlane when some oil leaked onto the car’s exhaust, requiring a change of gearbox on the MR03.
He returned to the track just in time to register a flying lap two tenths clear of his team-mate Bianchi.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m25.814s 27 2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m25.997s +0.183s 31 3. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m26.421s +0.607s 29 4. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m26.872s +1.058s 23 5. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m27.220s +1.406s 28 6. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m27.357s +1.543s 28 7. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m27.683s +1.869s 30 8. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m27.782s +1.968s 16 9. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m27.804s +1.990s 27 10. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m27.960s +2.146s 24 11. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m27.967s +2.153s 25 12. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m28.101s +2.287s 28 13. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m28.208s +2.394s 32 14. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m28.266s +2.452s 28 15. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m28.330s +2.516s 21 16. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m28.376s +2.562s 24 17. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m28.593s +2.779s 24 18. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m29.025s +3.211s 23 19. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m30.363s +4.549s 30 20. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m30.892s +5.078s 24 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m31.004s +5.190s 5 22. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m31.248s +5.434s 20
Raikkonen: “100% belief in the guys in the factory”
Mogyorod, 24 July – Kimi Raikkonen had his usual meeting with the media this afternoon, in the hot conditions that are likely to typify this Hungarian weekend. As to how the Scuderia Ferrari man expects to perform at the Hungaroring, it’s the usual Thursday guessing game. “Hopefully, we’ll get that good feeling and get the car where we want and just have a clean weekend without any issues in any practices and can try things where we want,” he began. “Even though it’s twisty and people say you can’t overtake here, we’ve seen in the past that it can change a lot in the race after qualifying so we’ll see how it goes.”
On the much discussed topic that the Finn has found it hard to get a good feeling form his F14 T, the Ferrari man felt progress was being made. “There’s sometimes a good feeling and unfortunately it doesn’t last long, but last weekend was a better feeling again, we changed something in the car so hopefully that will put us in the right direction and we can get to where we should be.”
Kimi has spent a lot of time in Maranello and what he saw in the factory has put him in a positive frame of mind when it comes to next year. “I have 100% belief in the people in the factory and I know that we have the tools and the people to do the job we’re supposed to do. I’m sure we can be where we should be, hopefully already next year. With Marco (Mattiacci,) he didn’t have much knowledge of F1 when he came in but he has a smart head. I think he’s doing good work, making good decisions, but it takes time to get involved and get people’s trust but I think he’s the guy we need.”
Raikkonen sure he can turn season around
Kimi Raikkonen is confident he can start to reap the rewards of his recent progress with the Ferrari F14 T in Hungary this weekend after a series of disappointing results.
Raikkonen has scored just two points in the last five races and finished 11th in Germany after a poor qualifying result and car damage in the race. However, he is confident he made progress at Hockenheim and is hoping for a problem-free weekend to make the most of his progress.
"Overall it was a bit better and a lot more to my liking over the weekend," he said. "But I did qualifying and we were a bit out of position compared to where I think we should have been. Then you end up between the cars fighting and we got damaged twice on the front wing and I think that compromised our race a lot.
"Probably we should have done different things on the tactics, but that’s how it went. There were some good times and hopefully that’s happening more and we can keep it all the time.
"Obviously [at Ferrari] it’s a different team, different car design and certain things are slightly different to how it was in the past. The biggest difference is that it’s not to my liking, and unfortunately these are not easy things to change.
"I’m sure we can turn it around and sometimes there is a good feeling but it doesn’t last long. Last weekend was a better feeling again and we changed something and got something new in the car so hopefully that will start putting us in the right direction and we will get to where we should be."
Raikkonen’s highlight of the season came in Monaco where he was running third before a collision with Max Chilton. He is hoping the Hungaroring’s tight layout will give him a chance to be competitive again this weekend.
"It’s a different circuit more close to Monaco than the other place. We were having quite a good race there but obviously we have to see if we get that good feeling and get the car where we want and have that good feeling without any issues in practice to try things however we want.
"We will have to see tomorrow, but usually it is a good race and even this twisty track where people say you can’t overtake, we have seen in the past that it can change a lot in the race after qualifying. We’ll see how it goes."
German GP: Kimi Raikkonen blames car damage for point-less race
Kimi Raikkonen says damage from his incidents with Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel was the main reason for his failure to score in the German Grand Prix.
The Finn’s Ferrari was battered from two clashes in three-abreast dices on the run to the Spitzkehre hairpin at the end of the Hockenheim track’s curved back section.
The first came as Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes passed both Raikkonen and Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo in a battle for eighth on lap 12, the second when both Alonso and Vettel caught Raikkonen on fresh tyres after pitstops two laps later.
Raikkonen said damage to his front wing caused a dramatic increase in tyre wear that hampered his aggressive strategy, in which he switched to super-softs at his first stop on lap 20.
“We thought it was the right [strategy] choice but I got hit twice, ended up in the middle of two cars and damaged my front wing. The endplate came off,” he explained.
“That didn’t help. I killed the front left – the tyres were always OK except the front left.
“So I couldn’t run as long as we wanted on the super-softs and just lost performance because of the damage to the car.”
He underlined that he had no complaints about either incident.
“It was OK, but when I’m in the middle I can’t go anywhere. I ended up squeezed a little bit,” said Raikkonen.
“It wasn’t much but it was enough to damage the wing. I couldn’t go more to the left because there were cars.”
German GP: Rosberg cruises to victory, Hamilton recovers to third
Nico Rosberg extended his lead in the Formula 1 world championship with a comfortable victory in the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.
The Mercedes driver converted pole position into his fourth win of the season, while the Williams of Valtteri Bottas fended off the second Mercedes of Rosberg’s title rival Lewis Hamilton to finish second.
Hamilton fought his way through the field to finish third from 20th on the grid, following his brake-failure-induced crash in qualifying.
Hamilton’s journey to the podium was fraught with peril, as the 2008 world champion survived repeated contact at the Turn 4 hairpin as he raced his way through the pack.
Hamilton got away with hitting Adrian Sutil’s Sauber and Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari, but slightly damaged his front wing after a late dive up the inside of Jenson Button’s McLaren.
This compromised his second stint on Pirelli’s soft tyre and meant Mercedes had to switch its charger onto a three-stop strategy.
Hamilton made up the time lost in the pits but took too much out of his final set of tyres and fell short of claiming second spot from Bottas by just 1.7 seconds.
Bottas executed a two-stop strategy to claim his third consecutive podium finish for Williams after starting second, but team-mate Felipe Massa only made it to the first corner before contact with Kevin Magnussen’s fast-starting McLaren tipped the Williams into a race-ending roll, and meant the first lap finished behind the safety car.
Magnussen, who started fourth and was trying to pass Massa for third when they came together, fell to the back of the field, while the incident also delayed Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull, which had to take avoiding action across the Turn 1 run-off.
This incident promoted world champion Sebastian Vettel to third on the road, and the Red Bull racer converted that into a fourth placed finish after another battle with Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari.
Alonso was another driver who tried to make a two-stop strategy work, but the Spaniard could not manage it and a late third stop dropped him out of the top six.
He passed Jenson Button’s McLaren for sixth with relative ease, but found the recovering Red Bull of Ricciardo a more obstinate obstacle.
The Australian defended hard, but Alonso – running on the faster super-soft tyre – eventually fought his way past four laps from the finish.
Ricciardo came back at the Ferrari on the final lap, though, and fell just eight hundredths of a second shy of stealing fifth back on the run to the finish line.
Button lost seventh to Nico Hulkenberg’s Force India after being forced to make a very late third tyre stop, while McLaren team-mate Magnussen salvaged ninth after his first-lap incident.
Sergio Perez claimed the final point for 10th place in the second Force India, ahead of the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen, who twice survived contact while being passed into the Turn 4 hairpin – once with Hamilton and also with Vettel.
Results - 67 laps Pos Driver Team Time/Gap 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1h33m42.914s 2. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes +20.789s 3. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +22.530s 4. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault +44.014s 5. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +52.467s 6. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault +52.549s 7. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes +1m04.178s 8. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes +1m24.711s 9. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes -1 lap 10. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes -1 lap 11. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari -1 lap 12. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault -1 lap 13. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault -1 lap 14. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari -1 lap 15. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari -1 lap 16. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault -2 laps 17. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari -2 laps 18. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault -2 laps Retirements Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 47 laps Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 44 laps Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 26 laps Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 0 laps Drivers' championship Constructors' championship 1. Nico Rosberg 190 1. Mercedes 366 2. Lewis Hamilton 176 2. Red Bull-Renault 188 3. Daniel Ricciardo 106 3. Williams-Mercedes 121 4. Fernando Alonso 97 4. Ferrari 116 5. Valtteri Bottas 91 5. Force India-Mercedes 98 6. Sebastian Vettel 82 6. McLaren-Mercedes 96 7. Nico Hülkenberg 69 7. Toro Rosso-Renault 15 8. Jenson Button 59 8. Lotus-Renault 8 9. Kevin Magnussen 37 9. Marussia-Ferrari 2 10. Felipe Massa 30 10. Sauber-Ferrari 0 11. Sergio Pérez 29 11. Caterham-Renault 0 12. Kimi Räikkönen 19 13. Jean-Éric Vergne 9 14. Romain Grosjean 8 15. Daniil Kvyat 6 16. Jules Bianchi 2
“Exploiting any opportunity”
Kimi Raikkonen: “This weekend, a few technical problems meant I spent more time in the garage than usual, but already, as from yesterday afternoon, my feeling with the car had improved. Today, in Q1 things went reasonably well, but then in Q2, when I fitted the second set of new Supersofts, my car was sliding all over the place and I lost the back end in turn 2. After that, it was impossible to put a good lap together. I’m not happy with my grid position, but I hope things can go better in tomorrow’s race. It’s likely the weather could be different tomorrow and the temperatures will be lower. We will try and make the most of any opportunity because we want to have a nice race and bring home a good number of points.”
Raikkonen frustrated by Q2 mistakes
Kimi Raikkonen has admitted that several mistakes during his final Q2 lap cost him a chance of progressing to the final qualifying segment.
The Finn had felt more comfortable at the wheel of the F14 T at the Hockenheimring but failed to put a clean lap together in the second session.
He was eventually knocked down to 12th place and will start tomorrow’s German Grand Prix from the sixth row of the grid.
“On the second run, for some reason, I lost the rear in corner two, lost a lot of time and it was difficult to gain back the time after that,” admitted the 2007 champion.
“I also lost time in the last sector, so I couldn’t put the lap together. It had felt pretty okay up to that point. We had a problem yesterday morning and a problem this morning, which doesn’t help, but the car was feeling pretty good yesterday morning and this morning so it was an unfortunate thing, but it happens.”
When asked why he has struggled more in qualifying, he replied: “It’s just different things [affecting qualifying]. In the races, it hasn’t been that good either, so it’s just things going wrong or I’m making mistakes and haven’t been able to put a proper lap together for a long time.
“But it’s been feeling much better here, more like it should. It’s not exactly as I want as it feels good for one run then, on the next, you lose the rear for no reason, but I’m not trying anything stupid.
“It’s so on edge that it’s difficult to predict what it’s going to do and one slip, like I had on corner two, and you lose all the speed on the straight. When it happens in moments like that, it makes a big difference.”
German GP: Rosberg on pole, Hamilton down in 15th
Nico Rosberg claimed pole position for the German Grand Prix after Formula 1 title rival Lewis Hamilton crashed early in the session.
With Hamilton absent, Rosberg’s main challenge for pole position came from Williams driver Valtteri Bottas..
After setting the pace on the first runs in Q3, Rosberg was unable to improve his time on his second run thanks to a slow first sector, but although Bottas set a stunning pace in the middle sector he ended up 0.219s slower.
Hamilton’s shunt happened during Q1 when he locked up and went off at the Sachskurve after suffering what Mercedes confirmed was a right-front brake disc failure, forcing the session to be red-flagged.
The Mercedes driver was transferred to the medical centre complaining of pain in his knees, with the team subsequently reporting that he was “OK, but sore after the crash”.
Although he had already set a laptime good enough to make Q2, Hamilton was unable to take any further part in the session so was classified 16th overall.
Felipe Massa was third fastest for Williams, three tenths slower than team-mate Bottas, with Kevin Magnussen a superb fourth for McLaren.
Daniel Ricciardo again outqualified Sebastian Vettel, putting in a strong lap on his one remaining set of super-soft Pirellis in Q3 to beat his team-mate by three tenths.
Fernando Alonso was seventh, ahead of another star rookie, Daniil Kvyat, with Force India pairing Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez ninth and 10th.
Jenson Button failed to make Q3 after being relegated to 11th by Perez in the dying seconds on the second part of qualifying.
He was joined in being knocked out by fellow world champion Kimi Raikkonen, who was four tenths off Ferrari team-mate Alonso in Q2.
Jean-Eric Vergne was 13th after a late effort in Q2, which included a lairy oversteer moment at the exit of the final corner, ahead of Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez and Lotus driver Romain Grosjean.
But Gutierrez must serve a three-place grid penalty for his clash with Pastor Maldonado at Silverstone, meaning he will start 18th, meaning Hamilton’s 16th place will put him one place higher on the grid.
Adrian Sutil was the fastest of the six who failed to reach Q2 after being bumped down to 17th by Grosjean late in the first segment of qualifying, with his run on super-soft rubber interrupted by the red flag thrown for Hamilton’s accident.
Jules Bianchi was the faster of the Marussias, around half-a-second slower than the Sauber, with Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado 19th.
Kamui Kobayashi pipped Max Chilton to 20th, but the second Caterham of Marcus Ericsson was unable to run at all thanks to a hydraulic leak.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m16.540s 2. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m16.759s +0.219s 3. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m17.078s +0.538s 4. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m17.214s +0.674s 5. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m17.273s +0.733s 6. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m17.577s +1.037s 7. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m17.649s +1.109s 8. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m17.965s +1.425s 9. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m18.014s +1.474s 10. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m18.035s +1.495s Q2 cut-off time: 1m18.161s Gap ** 11. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m18.193s +1.084s 12. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m18.273s +1.164s 13. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m18.285s +1.176s 14. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m18.787s +1.678s 15. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m18.983s +1.874s 16. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes no time Q1 cut-off time: 1m18.927s Gap * 17. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m19.142s +1.511s 18. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m19.676s +2.045s 19. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m20.195s +2.564s 20. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m20.408s +2.777s 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m20.489s +2.858s 22. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault no time
German GP: Nico Rosberg back on top in final practice
Nico Rosberg was 0.601s faster than Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton in third practice for the 2014 Formula 1 German Grand Prix.
Fernando Alonso was third quickest for Ferrari.
Both Mercedes went out on simulated qualifying runs in the closing minutes but Hamilton’s lap was scrappier than Rosberg’s.
Most teams focused on longer runs with higher fuel loads for the majority of the session, before sending their drivers out for simulated qualifying runs on the super-soft tyres in the final 10 minutes.
Williams was chasing lap time early in the session, which put Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa at the top of the timesheets for the first half hour until Kimi Raikkonen, the first driver to go out on the super-soft tyres, usurped them.
Times then tumbled in the final minutes as Mercedes returned to its customary 1-2 position.
Alonso had a spin at Turn 8 after overshooting the apex and running wide over the exit kerb, but his super-soft run was flawlessly committed and he closed out the session third fastest, 0.60s off Rosberg’s benchmark.
Team-mate Raikkonen did not improve on the 1m18.842s he set on his first super-soft run, eighth quickest overall.
Bottas had outpaced Massa on the longer runs, but in qualifying trim the Brazilian had the edge over his team-mate and they ended the session fourth and fifth just off Alonso’s pace.
It was Jenson Button’s turn to test McLaren’s new rear wing, but he struggled with locking brakes and ended the session slower than team-mate Kevin Magnussen, who was sixth fastest.
Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel were fighting their cars throughout and the Red Bull drivers could do no better than seventh and ninth.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m17.779s 24 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m18.380s +0.601s 20 3. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m18.384s +0.605s 11 4. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m18.575s +0.796s 18 5. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m18.611s +0.832s 19 6. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m18.756s +0.977s 16 7. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m18.769s +0.990s 13 8. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m18.842s +1.063s 8 9. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m18.890s +1.111s 17 10. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m19.127s +1.348s 19 11. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m19.131s +1.352s 19 12. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m19.470s +1.691s 20 13. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m19.489s +1.710s 15 14. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m19.505s +1.726s 21 15. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m19.601s +1.822s 23 16. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m20.078s +2.299s 23 17. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m20.198s +2.419s 21 18. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m20.466s +2.687s 19 19. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m20.844s +3.065s 6 20. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m21.018s +3.239s 21 21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m23.077s +5.298s 14 22. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m23.449s +5.670s 7
Kimi Raikkonen: “Too early for predictions”
Kimi Raikkonen: “Like every Friday, our programme covered set-up work in the first session, then evaluating the tyres and doing a race simulation in the afternoon. Unfortunately in the morning, because of a technical problem, I had to come back to the garage and was unable to do an additional run on the Soft tyres, but thanks to a great job from the team, I managed to quickly get back out on track. In the afternoon, we made up for lost time and managed to improve on all fronts. Overall, it’s been a reasonably positive day, but it’s still to early to make any predictions. We will have to wait until tomorrow to know more.”
German GP: Hamilton pips Rosberg in second practice
Lewis Hamilton pipped Formula 1 title rival Nico Rosberg to the fastest time on the opening day of practice for the German Grand Prix.
Rosberg had been the faster of the Mercedes pair early in the session while on the slower soft-compound Pirellis, outpacing Hamilton by just over three tenths of a second.
But the world championship leader made a mistake at Turn 2 on his first flying lap on super-soft rubber, meaning he was unable to improve his time until his next lap.
Hamilton then put in a 1m18.341s on his first flier, setting the fastest time in the middle sector, with Rosberg ending up 24 thousandths of a second slower.
Mercedes later had a problem in the pits when Hamilton came in unexpectedly and the team had Rosberg’s tyres ready, meaning that it took time to get his correct tyres.
With Hamilton sat in the pits, Rosberg came in and had to queue to wait for the team to put on the correct tyres amid concerns about his brakes overheating.
Daniel Ricciardo was third fastest for Red Bull, just a tenth off the pace, with Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen a strong fourth, half a second down.
Kevin Magnussen continued his recent run of impressive form with fifth fastest, just ahead of Williams driver Felipe Massa, who was briefly second fastest in the early stages of the super-soft runs.
World champions Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso were eighth and ninth fastest, the former failing to extract as big an improvement on super-soft rubber as those at the front.
Sauber driver Adrian Sutil was 11th fastest for Sauber ahead of Daniil Kvyat, with Force India pairing failing to break the top 10 for the second grand prix Friday in a row in 13th and 14th place.
Caterham had a troubled session, with both cars stopping on the circuit.
Kamui Kobayashi parked with flames emerging from the rear of the car after completing 12 laps, while Marcus Ericsson was ordered to stop his car on track because of a drop in oil pressure after just three laps.
But the team did get Ericsson’s car back and he was able to return to the track in the final half hour, allowing him to set the 20th fastest time.
With the ambient temperature at over 30C throughout the afternoon, track temperatures hit 58C, the highest so far this season.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m18.341s 38 2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m18.365s +0.024s 39 3. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m18.443s +0.102s 35 4. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m18.887s +0.546s 38 5. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m18.960s +0.619s 40 6. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m19.024s +0.683s 36 7. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m19.221s +0.880s 40 8. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m19.248s +0.907s 35 9. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m19.329s +0.988s 32 10. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m19.385s +1.044s 34 11. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m19.417s +1.076s 41 12. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m19.452s +1.111s 27 13. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m19.581s +1.240s 28 14. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m19.593s +1.252s 32 15. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m19.760s +1.419s 32 16. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m20.158s +1.817s 35 17. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m20.358s +2.017s 35 18. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m20.504s +2.163s 40 19. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m21.328s +2.987s 31 20. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m21.870s +3.529s 21 21. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m21.898s +3.557s 28 22. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m23.728s +5.387s 12
German GP: Rosberg leads Hamilton in first practice
Nico Rosberg went fastest for Mercedes in first practice for the 2014 Formula 1 German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.
Rosberg went 0.065s quicker than team-mate Lewis Hamilton. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso was best of the rest, 0.292s off Rosberg’s pace.
The Mercedes pairing were among many to explore the track limits frequently as the drivers adjusted to life without the FRIC suspension systems that all teams have removed in advance of the weekend.
Sebastian Vettel was fastest on 1m20.295s in the busy first half-hour of session as several drivers made use of the extra set of soft tyres that have to be handed back to Pirelli at the 30-minute mark.
He improved that time during a multi-lap run later in the session, but by that time both Jenson Button and Daniel Ricciardo had gone even faster.
At that point Mercedes finally showed its hand as first Rosberg, then Hamilton, went half a second faster than their rivals, a gap only Alonso could partially bridge – and then only with a committed lap.
Hamilton was quickest of all in the first two sectors, but could not unite the two over the course of one lap, finishing on 1m19.196s to Rosberg’s 1m19.131s.
Ferrari used the early part of the session to evaluate aero characteristics of Alonso’s rear wing with flow-vis paint, but its programme was set back when Kimi Raikkonen had a water pump failure that took half an hour to resolve.
Raikkonen returned to the track but, in spite of completing a respectable number of laps, set a best time of 1m20.210 that was only eighth fastest overall.
McLaren sported a fresh look, with a new rear wing design featuring sophisticated detailing around the endplates, and a new race engineer for Jenson Button: Olympic rowing medallist Tom Stallard.
They had a reasonably encouraging session, Button completing 24 laps and Kevin Magnussen 32, finishing fifth and seventh quickest.
Williams tester Susie Wolff enjoyed a lengthier stint in the cockpit than she did at Silverstone, despite a scare in the opening minutes when her FW36 slowed with a sensor issue.
She closed out the session just two tenths of a second off the pace of Felipe Massa, well under the half-second benchmark the team had set.
There was a substantial gap between the runners at the bottom end of the timesheets as Lotus, Caterham and Marussia languished over two seconds off the pace.
Romain Grosjean had a rear wing failure that caused his DRS to stick open under braking in a high-speed section, while Max Chilton brought up the rear after a number of power unit problems.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m19.131s 29 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m19.196s +0.065s 25 3. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m19.423s +0.292s 21 4. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m19.697s +0.566s 27 5. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m19.833s +0.702s 24 6. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m20.097s +0.966s 28 7. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m20.105s +0.974s 32 8. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m20.210s +1.079s 21 9. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m20.337s +1.206s 28 10. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m20.505s +1.374s 18 11. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m20.542s +1.411s 19 12. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m20.586s +1.455s 23 13. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m20.592s +1.461s 22 14. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m20.598s +1.467s 24 15. Susie Wolff Williams-Mercedes 1m20.769s +1.638s 22 16. Giedo van der Garde Sauber-Ferrari 1m20.782s +1.651s 23 17. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m21.603s +2.472s 20 18. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m21.854s +2.723s 30 19. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m22.572s +3.441s 31 20. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m22.982s +3.851s 24 21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m23.256s +4.125s 35 22. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m23.299s +4.168s 22
Kimi, the first question has to be how are you feeling after your accident at Silverstone, any after-effects and what happened?
Kimi RAIKKONEN: Well, I crashed, I guess you saw it. No, I had some pain but it’s all fine.
Just in your leg?
KR: No actually it was in my ribs the most, that’s why I didn’t do the test, but it’s all gone away now.
You’re 100 per cent now?
Many things have not gone the way you expected them to this season in your rejoining Ferrari, but can you tell us what has gone the way you’ve expected it and what positives you’ve drawn so far?
KR: We’ve been in every race at least. That’s what you expect at least. It’s been a difficult year, hopefully it will turn around at some point – it must, it cannot go much longer like this, it’s not fun. But this kind of thing has happened to me before and we always managed to turn it around, so I have a strong belief it will turn around. We have to just fix issues and get things as I want and I’m sure we can be back where we should be.
Q: (Paolo Ianieri – La Gazzetta dello Sport) Kimi there has been a lot of criticism around you in the past few months. Do you feel that your position in Ferrari could be threatened next year or do you feel confident that you will sort your problems and that everything is going to be OK for the future?
KR: Like I said, I’m sure we can fix them. How fast? I hope quickly but it depends on many things. I have a contract so I’m not worried about that for the future.
Kimi, your thoughts on the FRIC suspension?
KR: Yeah, I mean it’s the rule and obviously that decides if we can use it or not. It’s not in our car, I don’t expect it’s going to be a completely different world but until we run it, the cars, and see what the other teams do, it’s hard to say. I guess we’ll know a bit more after this weekend.
Q: (Heikki Kulta – Turun Sanomat) Kimi, do you remember having any heavier shunt than you had in Silverstone?
KR: Yeah, probably I have had. Hopefully not too many more but it’s just part of the thing. It hurt a little bit but quite often you can have a quite slow accident and get badly hurt, so it’s not about that really, it was just an unfortunate thing. Nothing serious happened. It’s part of the sport.
Kimi Raikkonen: “Ready to try again”
Kimi Raikkonen: “Unfortunately, my race today ended on the first lap, after I had managed to get away well, making up enough ground to be fighting for eleventh place. At turn 5, I went off the track and while trying to get back on, I must have hit a kerb. I then lost control of the car and ended in the barriers. It’s a real shame because yesterday, the feeling I had on track had improved and I was determined to do my utmost to bring home some points. I am really very disappointed with how things went today, but now I want to put this incident behind me and just concentrate on the next race in Germany.”
British GP: Kimi Raikkonen escapes serious injury after big crash
Kimi Raikkonen has escaped serious injury in a high-speed crash on the opening lap of the British Grand Prix that stopped the Formula 1 race.
The Finn, who had qualified in 18th place after a difficult qualifying, was battling to recover positions when he went wide at Aintree corner after running side-by-side with Esteban Gutierrez before the run down the Wellington Straight.
As Raikkonen tried to return to the circuit, his car hit a bump in the grass and he lost control after it bounced back onto the ground.
His Ferrari speared headfirst into the crash barriers on the right-hand side of the track before spinning back across the circuit.
Kamui Kobayashi had to take to the grass to avoid him, while Felipe Massa was forced to spin in avoidance, with his left rear wheel clouting Raikkonen’s car.
Raikkonen was able to get out of the car by himself, but after limping away it was decided that he needed to be taken to the medical centre for checks.
A Ferrari spokesman confirmed that Raikkonen had suffered no serious injuries, but was complaining of bruising to his knee and ankle.
The race was red-flagged and delayed while the barrier was fixed.
British GP: Hamilton takes commanding win as Rosberg retires
Lewis Hamilton slashed the points gap to Nico Rosberg in the Formula 1 world championship by winning the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Rosberg led for half the race until a gearbox problem forced him to retire his Mercedes from a race for the first time this season.
Hamilton capitalised fully to snatch victory in his home grand prix, making up for mistakenly aborting his final flying lap in qualifying and cutting his Mercedes team-mate’s lead in the title race to just four points.
Things had been looking good for Rosberg, who converted pole position into the lead as fellow front-row starter Sebastian Vettel made a slow getaway and slipped to fourth, behind the quick-starting McLarens of Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen.
Hamilton also made a decent start from row three, jumping Nico Hulkenberg’s Force India and driving around the outside of Vettel through Village to snatch fourth, briefly banging wheels with the reigning world champion on his way past.
The grand prix was only five corners old when Kimi Raikkonen crashed his Ferrari heavily on the Wellington Straight and stopped the race.
The Finn lost control of his F14 T over a bump as he rejoined the circuit after running wide at Aintree, striking the barrier on the right-hand side and spinning back across the track.
Felipe Massa’s Williams was also damaged heavily when it clipped the Ferrari as Massa tried to take avoiding action.
Raikkonen reported ankle pain as he climbed from his car, while Massa retired his Williams back to the pits with suspension damage.
Raikkonen’s errant Ferrari also eliminated Kamui Kobayshi’s Caterham, which ran just ahead of Massa after the Brazilian bogged down at the start.
The race resumed behind the safety car after a lengthy delay to repair damaged barrier, and Rosberg sprinted away at the restart as Hamilton worked to get past the two McLarens.
The 2008 world champion made short work of the task, passing Magnussen when the Dane ran wide at Copse on lap three and driving past Button into Brooklands next time around, to cheers from the partisan crowd.
By then Rosberg had opened out a four-second lead and he looked comfortable until the closing stages of the first stint, when Hamilton began to attack.
The Briton was attempting to beat his team-mate with an alternative strategy, running longer than Rosberg on the medium tyre and switching to the hard compound for his second stint, but strategy became a moot point when a gradually worsening gearbox problem forced Rosberg out shortly after his first pitstop.
Hamilton was thus left clear to cruise to a comfortable 28.9-second victory over the Williams of Valtteri Bottas, who charged superbly from 14th on the grid to finish second.
Daniel Ricciardo – who started eighth in his Red Bull – and Button successfully executed one-stop strategies to finish third and fourth, clear of a feisty late battle between Vettel and Fernando Alonso – who received a five-second stop-go penalty for starting out of position – for fifth.
Both champions complained of the other exceeding track limits and driving unfairly, but Vettel – on fresher tyres after two-stopping to Alonso’s one – eventually prevailed by diving up the inside of his rival on the exit of Luffield and completing the pass at Copse in the closing stages.
Magnussen was out-foxed by both Alonso and Vettel in on-track battles, and trailed them home seventh in his one-stopping McLaren.
Hulkenberg salvaged four points for eighth place in a Force India that looked short on grip throughout the race, while Toro Rosso made up for its recent run of chronic unreliability by rounding out the points scorers in ninth and 10th.
Daniil Kvyat fell just 0.6s short of beating Hulkenberg, but headed home team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne, who was delayed by tagging the 11th placed Force India of Sergio Perez on the first run through Abbey after the start.
Results - 52 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 2h26m52.094s 2. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes +30.135s 3. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault +46.495s 4. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes +47.390s 5. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault +53.864s 6. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +59.946s 7. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes +1m02.563s 8. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes +1m28.692s 9. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault +1m29.340s 10. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault -1 lap 11. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes -1 lap 12. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault -1 lap 13. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari -1 lap 14. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari -1 lap 15. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault -2 laps 16. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari -2 laps 17. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault -3 laps
Kimi Raikkonen: “Make up ground”
Kimi Raikkonen: “We knew the changeable weather would make this qualifying very unpredictable, but I definitely didn’t expect this sort of result. On my first run, I did four laps on Intermediate tyres because the track was still wet, but then when it stopped raining we decided to switch to slicks. On the first part of the track, the conditions were acceptable, but in the second sector, it began raining again and this prevented us from setting a good enough time to get into Q2. Tomorrow, it won’t be easy moving up the order, but we will do our best to make up ground, also because today I had a better feeling than yesterday and I see no reason why I shouldn’t try and have a good race.”
British GP: Rosberg on pole as team-mate Hamilton finishes sixth
Nico Rosberg claimed pole position for the British Grand Prix, with Formula 1 title rival Lewis Hamilton down in sixth.
With rain coming and going throughout the qualifying hour, the first runs in Q3 were all affected to varying degrees by rain in the final sector, with Hamilton initially going fastest on slicks.
But conditions had dramatically improved by the final seconds of qualifying as drivers attempted their second runs and with Hamilton abandoning his lap after complaining that it was too slippery, he tumbled down the order late on as others improved.
Rosberg’s pole lap was 1.6s faster than second-placed Sebastian Vettel, who had not set a time on his first run after abandoning his lap because of the rain.
Jenson Button was third fastest thanks to his late lap ahead of the Force India of Nico Hulkenberg, the German briefly taking top spot after being the first to improve on the second runs.
Kevin Magnussen, the last of the five drivers who did improve on their second runs, was fifth fastest ahead of Hamilton.
Sergio Perez, Daniel Ricciardo, Daniil Kvyat and Jean-Eric Vergne had held positions third-to-seventh until moments before the end of the session thanks to their first run times, but plummeted as other drivers completed their final laps.
Romain Grosjean was the fastest of those to drop out in Q2, ending up 11th.
But the big surprise in the middle segment of qualifying, which started in intermediate conditions before everyone switched to slicks, was Marussia.
Having both escaped Q1 after good performances in mixed conditions, Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton produced the best qualifying performance for the team since it came into F1 in 2010, finishing 12th and 13th.
Esteban Gutierrez was 14th after losing his Sauber on the exit kerb at Brooklands corner and being spat onto the grass at the entry to Luffield and backing into the wall.
Behind him was Pastor Maldonado, who was forced to stop late in the session after suffering an engine problem.
Adrian Sutil was 16th fastest, making Q2 but being unable to participate as he had spun into the gravel.
Ferrari and Williams suffered Q1 disasters, with Valtteri Bottas, Felipe Massa, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen all being knocked out.
Q1 had started in intermediate conditions, but all four were unable to put together good enough laps having switched to medium-compound Pirellis.
Bottas and Massa, who were among the latest drivers to take slick rubber, ended up 17th and 18th thanks to a combination of yellow flags and light rain returning late on.
Alonso was 19th after losing the rear on turn-in to Brooklands and having to take to the runoff area on what should have been his best lap.
Team-mate Kimi Raikkonen was 20th, ahead only of the Caterhams of Marcus Ericsson and Kamui Kobayashi.
Neither Caterham driver set a time on slicks, with Kobayashi suffering a car problem after a single lap on mediums and Ericsson suffering a couple of offs during the session.
The stewards will investigate an impeding incident involving Pastor Maldonado and Sergio Perez, which occurred during Q2, after the session..
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m35.766s 2. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m37.386s +1.620s 3. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m38.200s +2.434s 4. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m38.329s +2.563s 5. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m38.417s +2.651s 6. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m39.232s +3.466s 7. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m40.457s +4.691s 8. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m40.606s +4.840s 9. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m40.707s +4.941s 10. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m40.855s +5.089s Q2 cut-off time: 1m38.166s Gap ** 11. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m38.496s +3.626s 12. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m38.709s +3.839s 13. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1m39.800s +4.930s 14. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m40.912s +6.042s 15. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m44.018s +9.148s 16. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari no time Q1 cut-off time: 1m45.086s Gap * 17. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m45.318s +4.938s 18. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m45.695s +5.315s 19. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m45.935s +5.555s 20. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m46.684s +6.304s 21. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m49.421s +9.041s 22. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m49.625s +9.245s 107% time: 1m47.406s
* Gap to quickest in Q1
** Gap to quickest in Q2
British GP: Sebastian Vettel leads Red Bull 1-2 in final practice
Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo topped the timesheets for Red Bull during a damp third Formula 1 practice session for the 2014 British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Vettel, who had a moment at Becketts shortly after setting his session-topping 1m52.522s, edged his team-mate by 0.109s. Both drivers completed just six laps.
Running conditions were very different after overnight rain, and the only consistent factor was the gusting nature of the wind, now blowing from the northwest rather than the south.
The track briefly began to dry during the opening minutes of the session before a fresh bank of rain blew in, and most teams therefore took a conservative approach.
Neither Williams drivers set a time until the final minutes, and both Mercedes drivers aborted potentially quick laps before ducking back in to the pits. Lewis Hamilton was provisionally half a second quicker than Vettel before running off-track at Stowe and heading immediately to the garage.
Lotus drivers Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean were third and fourth fastest, Maldonado completing 10 laps while Grosjean called it a day after spinning at the exit of Club and nearly hitting the pit wall.
Adrian Sutil was fifth quickest, setting his best lap on intermediate tyres just before the end of the session. Sauber team-mate Esteban Gutierrez struggled to match Sutil’s enterprise under braking and finished outside the top 10.
Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat was an impressive sixth fastest and ran the most number of laps (15), encountering a wide variety of track conditions and testing the limits of his car on a number of occasions.
Kimi Raikkonen was the only Ferrari driver to set a time, though he completed just five laps, with Fernando Alonso and both Mercedes at the foot of the timing screens without a flying lap to their names.
Max Chilton was another not to set a time, the Briton suffering a terminal gearbox problem on his installation lap that required the team to fit a new gearbox, which will mean a five-place grid penalty.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m52.522s 6 2. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1m52.631s +0.109s 6 3. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1m53.044s +0.522s 10 4. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1m53.566s +1.044s 6 5. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1m53.585s +1.063s 12 6. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1m53.654s +1.132s 15 7. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1m53.911s +1.389s 5 8. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1m54.041s +1.519s 6 9. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m54.217s +1.695s 4 10. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m54.558s +2.036s 5 11. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m54.602s +2.080s 6 12. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m54.761s +2.239s 13 13. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1m55.003s +2.481s 4 14. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1m55.688s +3.166s 6 15. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m56.918s +4.396s 7 16. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m57.091s +4.569s 10 17. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1m57.566s +5.044s 6 18. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1m57.914s +5.392s 10 19. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1 20. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 4 21. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 4 22. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
Kimi Raikkonen: “Problematic afternoon”
Kimi Raikkonen: “This morning in the first session things went reasonably well. We followed the standard programme, including analysing car behaviour on the Hard tyres and we just had a few problems with traction at some points on the track and a bit of understeer in the high speed corners. In the second session, we made some small changes which did not work and the handling of the car was not the same. Putting a good lap together was really difficult and so we went back to the morning settings, but unfortunately we had the same problems. Now we must find out what happened between the two sessions, even if I think it’s partly down to the track conditions and the gusts of wind, which were very strong today. I’m sure that studying the data will give us the information we need to prepare as well as possible for tomorrow.”
[…] with Kimi, we continued working on set-up to try and resolve some problems that cropped up on his car. Now we must find the best compromise to help both drivers to get the right stability for the rest of the weekend, taking into account that the weather is meant to get worse for tomorrow with a chance of rain.”