GP d’Europa, prove del sabato–18/06/2016
Nico Rosberg takes Baku F1 pole, Lewis Hamilton crashes in Q3
Nico Rosberg claimed a comfortable pole position for the European Grand Prix in Azerbaijan, as Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Lewis Hamilton crashed out in Q3.
Rosberg glanced the wall during his own final qualifying run at the Baku city F1 circuit, but still did enough to claim top spot by nearly eight tenths of a second.
Hamilton had earlier set the fastest time of all in the first sector but went off at Turn 15.
He regrouped and tried again, matching Rosberg’s pace in the first sector, but clipped the inside wall at Turn 12 and broke the front-right suspension on his Mercedes.
That caused the session to be red-flagged, and eventually left Hamilton down in 10th on the grid, without having set a proper time in Q3.
It was a messy session overall for the reigning world champion, who went off during each segment.
Sergio Perez therefore finished the session second fastest for Force India, but he will start seventh thanks to having to change the gearbox following a crash at the end of final practice.
Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel set identical times, over four tenths down on the Force India, but Ricciardo took third spot on account of being first across the timing line so inherits the front row position.
"Oh come on, you’re joking!" rued Vettel, after Ferrari broke the bad news over team radio.
Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa rounded out the top six, ahead of Daniil Kvyat, the second Williams of Valtteri Bottas, and the second Red Bull of Max Verstappen, who almost collided with Bottas while battling for track position in Q3.
Romain Grosjean’s Haas came within a tenth of making the top 10, but ended the session 11th fastest, ahead of the second Force India of Nico Hulkenberg, who spun on his first run in Q2 and was only 12th fastest on his second, complaining over team radio about a miscommunication of his run plan.
The second Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz Jr was 13th, ahead of Fernando Alonso’s McLaren-Honda and the second Haas of Esteban Gutierrez, who went off at Turn 7 on his final flying lap.
Felipe Nasr got Sauber through to Q2 for the first time since April’s Chinese GP, but couldn’t go any quicker in Q2 so finished up 16th fastest.
Manor-Mercedes enjoyed a competitive qualifying session, but missed out on making the Q2 cut by less than two tenths.
Rio Haryanto was fractionally faster than Mercedes junior Pascal Wehrlein, and both were quicker than Jenson Button’s McLaren-Honda, which wound up 19th after backing out of his final flying lap in Q1.
He ended up 0.054s down on Wehrlein and cursing over team radio.
Marcus Ericsson was 20th for Sauber, despite grazing a wall on his final lap, while Renault pairing Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer brought up the rear of the grid.
PROVISIONAL STARTING GRID:
|2||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m43.966s||1.208s|
|6||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m44.717s||1.959s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m43.515s||0.757s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m45.570s||2.812s|
|12||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m44.824s||–|
|13||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m45.000s||–|
Lewis Hamilton grabs Baku F1 practice top spot from Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton beat Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Nico Rosberg to the quickest time in final practice for the inaugural grand prix in Baku.
Hamilton clocked a 1m44.352s on super-softs on his qualifying simulation to finish 0.258 seconds clear of Rosberg.
It was a scrappy session for the champion, who failed to string together a clean run until his final lap with just a few minutes to go, allowing Rosberg to lead much of the hour.
Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg was best of the rest, 1.188s adrift in third.
But while one Force India was chasing Mercedes, the other caused a last-minute red flag as Sergio Perez crashed at Turn 15 just after the chequered flag had flown.
Williams had been in the mix with Force India behind Mercedes on Friday, but its Saturday got off to a bad start.
Valtteri Bottas ran over a loose drain cover in the pitlane at the end of his installation lap, flicking it up and causing damage to the car.
The team battled to get back him out again, but with 20 minutes to go it became clear that would not be possible.
Felipe Massa got sideways and clipped the wall on an early run, and though he soon returned to the track he was only 14th fastest.
Daniel Ricciardo was the quickest non-Mercedes powered car in fourth, ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Perez.
Max Verstappen was seventh with Jenson Button, who complained on team radio that he was held up by Hamilton on his low-fuel run, eighth.
Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen completed the top 10. The latter lost running time when he returned to the pits citing a loss of power.
Romain Grosjean, who was one of a number of drivers to slide into an escape road and had NASCAR driver Kurt Busch in the garage watching on, was the leading Haas in 13th.
Manor’s Pascal Wehlein finished ahead of Jolyon Palmer’s Renault and both Saubers in 17th.
The temperature ramped up in Baku on Saturday, with track temperatures 15C higher than they were in second practice.
PRACTICE THREE TIMES
|3||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m45.540s||1.188s||18|
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m45.620s||1.268s||13|
|6||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m45.735s||1.383s||17|
|7||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m45.901s||1.549s||14|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m45.981s||1.629s||19|
|12||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m46.190s||1.838s||17|