GP Monaco, prove sabato–23/05/2015
Lewis Hamilton takes Monaco GP Formula 1 pole for first time
Lewis Hamilton comfortably claimed pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix, as his Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Nico Rosberg’s qualifying challenge went awry.
The two Mercedes drivers were once again well clear of the rest of the field on pure pace and thus engaged in an exclusive battle for the top spot.
Hamilton trailed Rosberg by nearly four tenths of a second after Q2, but reversed the positions by just over a tenth of a second after their first runs in the top-10 shootout.
Hamilton found even more time on his final run in Q3, while Rosberg abandoned his after locking up heavily at Sainte Devote.
That left Hamilton 0.342 seconds clear in claiming his first pole position in Monte Carlo.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was the only other driver to lap below 1m16s as he secured third spot on the grid, just under two tenths of a second ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who also failed to improve on his second run in Q3.
Team-mate Daniil Kvyat did find time on his second run to place fifth, ahead of the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.
Force India’s Sergio Perez hustled the VJM08 to a superb seventh spot, just ahead of Carlos Sainz, Pastor Maldonado and Max Verstappen, who all ended up on the same tenth in eighth, ninth and 10th.
Romain Grosjean failed to join his Lotus team-mate Maldonado in the top 10 shootout, after locking up at the second part of the Swimming Pool on his quickest lap in Q2.
An expected five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change ahead of the event means he should start 16th for Sunday’s race.
McLaren-Honda was confident of getting both cars through to Q3 for the first time this season, but neither made the cut in the end.
Fernando Alonso’s car suffered a suspected electrical problem before he could complete a flying lap in Q2, while team-mate Jenson Button was less than a tenth of a second away from making the top 10, something he described as "painful" when he learned of his fate, having had to slow for yellow flags (after Rosberg locked up and went off at Sainte Devote) on his final flying lap.
Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg was lucky to get away with striking the wall at Mirabeau in Q1 and ended up 13th fastest overall, just under 0.2s adrift of team-mate Perez.
Williams struggled badly in Monaco, with Felipe Massa winding up 14th fastest while team-mate Valtteri Bottas ended up being the highest-profile casualty in Q1.
The Finn was more than six tenths of a second away from making the cut and wound up 17th fastest, between the Saubers of Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson.
The Manor/Marussias were over two seconds further back in filling the final row of the grid.
Will Stevens was three tenths faster than team-mate Roberto Merhi through the first sector of their quickest laps, which proved crucial in the final reckoning.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.041s||0.943s|
|5||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.182s||1.084s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.808s||1.710s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.957s||1.859s|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.193s||–|
|20||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.931s||–|
* Grosjean has a five-place penalty
Monaco GP: Sebastian Vettel fastest in final practice for Ferrari
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel topped the timesheets in third and final practice for the Monaco Grand Prix.
The German put a brilliant lap together in the closing stages to clock a 1m16.143s as Mercedes duo Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton were scrappy on their qualifying simulations.
Rosberg ended the session 0.218 seconds adrift of Vettel, with Hamilton a further three tenths further back on the streets of Monte Carlo.
After rain washed out most of second practice, teams wasted no time sending their drivers out on track to make up for lost time and gather crucial data for qualifying and the race.
Mercedes ran a different programme from most of its rivals, sending Hamilton and Rosberg straight out on the super-softs that could not be tried on Thursday while everyone else – except for Manor – focused on running the softs.
Hamilton and Rosberg did 10 laps on the super-soft rubber, performing cool-down laps in between each flying lap, with the German unable to get closer than half-a-second to the Briton.
The session was red-flagged just before the half-hour mark when Kimi Raikkonen glanced the barriers at Sainte Devote.
Quick work from the marshals meant the session was back under way a couple of minutes later, but several drivers’ super-soft tyre runs were disrupted as a result.
With just over 10 minutes remaining, the field turned its attention to qualifying-simulations on the super-soft tyres.
Hamilton was one of a number of drivers who complained about a lack of grip, with his team informing him that his tyre temperatures were a little high, and he was unable to improve on his earlier time.
And though Rosberg made a slight improvement and got ahead of Hamilton, it wasn’t enough to beat Vettel, who hooked up three impressive sectors to finish top of the pile.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was fourth quickest, nearly a second off the pace, with Carlos Sainz Jr continuing Toro Rosso’s good form this weekend with fifth.
Raikkonen was sixth quickest, having been unable to return to the track after his crash, ahead of Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat and McLaren’s Jenson Button.
Max Verstappen, who has been impressive so far considering he had not raced in Monaco before this weekend, briefly went fourth quickest on the super-softs.
But next time around, he clipped the barrier at the final corner and ultimately finished ninth, with Lotus’s Romain Grosjean completing the top 10.
Force India’s Sergio Perez was 11th, ahead of the Lotus of Pastor Maldonado, Nico Hulkenberg in the second Force India and McLaren’s Fernando Alonso.
Williams, currently third in the constructors’ championship, never challenged the top of the timesheets with Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa down in 15th and 16th respectively, two seconds off the pace.
The Saubers were fastest in the speed trap but struggled for overall pace. Felipe Nasr was 17th and Marcus Ericsson, who got his braking wrong at Ste Devote and went down the escape road, 18th.
Will Stevens was 4.950s off the pace in the Manor-run Marussia in 19th but finished more than a second clear of team-mate Roberto Merhi.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.120s||0.977s||26|
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.256s||1.113s||39|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.471s||1.328s||28|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.788s||1.645s||23|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.832s||1.689s||30|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.102s||1.959s||32|