Hungarian GP qualifying: Lewis Hamilton takes comfortable pole
Lewis Hamilton comfortably claimed pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix, by beating Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg for the ninth time in 10 Formula 1 qualifying sessions this season.
Rosberg complained about the handling of his car throughout the different stages of qualifying and couldn’t recover sufficiently to put up much of a fight.
Hamilton and Rosberg were separated by 0.358s after the first runs in Q3, and the German ended up over half a second adrift of Hamilton, who set the fastest lap of the weekend so far on his final effort to claim his fifth career pole in Hungary.
The expected close fight for best of the rest behind Mercedes materialised, as less than half a second covered Ferrari, Red Bull and Williams in Q2.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel ultimately claimed third on the grid, but he ended up only 0.035s clear of the improved Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo.
The second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen finished up 0.246s further back in fifth, while Valtteri Bottas was fastest of the two Williams drivers in sixth.
The second Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat joined the second Williams of Felipe Massa on row four, just ahead of Max Verstappen’s Toro Rosso, which only made one run in Q3.
Romain Grosjean’s Lotus rounded out the top 10, over half a second adrift of the next fastest car.
Neither Force India made it through to the top-10 shootout, along with the second Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz and Pastor Maldonado’s Lotus.
Hulkenberg and Sainz were less than a tenth away from Grosjean’s 10th placed Lotus in Q2, while Perez was almost six tenths further back in 13th.
Maldonado was top-10 fast in Q1, but he locked up at Turn 1 on his final flying lap in Q2, which contributed to him missing Q3 by 0.804s.
McLaren headed into qualifying hoping to challenge for a place in the top 10, but could do no better than 15th and 16th after both drivers encountered technical trouble.
Fernando Alonso made it through to Q2, but stopped at the entry to the pitlane during his first run, bringing out the red flags and ending the Spaniard’s session early.
An earlier problem with ERS deployment on Jenson Button’s car meant the Briton missed the Q2 cut by lapping just over a tenth of a second shy of Sainz’s Toro Rosso.
The Briton estimated his problem cost him 0.3s on his final flying lap.
The 2009 world champion joined the Saubers and Manors in dropping out during the first phase of qualifying.
Felipe Nasr felt he "lost it in the last two corners" and finished up 0.154s adrift of Sauber team-mate Marcus Ericsson, who felt he drove a good final flying lap in the sister C34.
Roberto Merhi comfortably out-qualified his team-mate Will Stevens by 0.533s, as the Manor cars filled their customary place on the final row of the grid.
HUNGARIAN GP GRID
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.754s|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1.312s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.659s|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1.806s|
|12||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.849s|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||2.441s|
Hungarian GP FP3: Lewis Hamilton marginally ahead of Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton goes into this afternoon’s qualifying session for Formula 1’s Hungarian Grand Prix as favourite for pole position after setting the pace in third free practice.
The Mercedes driver set the pace early in the session when everyone was lapping on the slower medium-compound Pirellis, just over a tenth faster than team-mate Nico Rosberg.
With most leaving it until the final 15 minutes before bolting on the softs and completing qualifying simulations, Hamilton was then knocked off top spot by Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg.
Hulkenberg was shuffled down to sixth by the end of the session, with Rosberg the first to relegate him after setting a 1m22.997s lap with 12 minutes remaining.
Three minutes later, Hamilton completed his ‘qualifying’ run, outpacing Rosberg by 0.098s to complete the preparation for his bid for a fifth Hungarian GP pole position.
Rosberg’s session ended with two minutes remaining when his engine stalled at the end of the pitlane when he was about to attempt a practice start.
The two Mercedes drivers were untouchable at the front, with Sebastian Vettel best of the rest in third, nine-tenths off Hamilton’s pace.
Daniil Kvyat edged the Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz with his final lap of the session, putting the Red Bull fourth ahead of its sister car.
Kvyat’s team-mate Daniel Ricciardo was unable to match the Russian, ending the session ninth after both Red Bulls started late to manage their engine mileage.
Max Verstappen also performed well, ending up seventh behind Hulkenberg and one place ahead of the McLaren of Fernando Alonso.
Alonso had been among the earliest drivers to set a time on the soft Pirellis, which put him third for a spell before he was shuffled back.
Behind Ricciardo, Romain Grosjean completed the top 10 for Lotus, 12-thousandths of a second ahead of team-mate Pastor Maldonado.
Williams had a quiet session, with Felipe Massa 12th and Valtteri Bottas – running the latest-specification front wing – 14th.
Perez, who had been as high as fourth by taking the soft tyre early, was 15th fastest ahead of the Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.
The Finn was unable to complete a qualifying simulation run because of a water leak, but he would have been comfortably in the top six had he done so given the performance gain of soft tyres.
|4||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1.218s||17|
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.329s||22|
|6||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1.486s||30|
|7||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.681s||22|
|9||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1.932s||12|
|15||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||2.396s||25|
Hungarian Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton leads Red Bull drivers in FP2
Lewis Hamilton set the pace in second Formula 1 practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix as Red Bull emerged as Mercedes’ closest challenger.
Hamilton clocked a 1m23.949s on the soft compound tyres, 0.351 seconds clear of Daniil Kvyat with the Red Bull driver’s team-mate Daniel Ricciardo 0.151s further adrift.
Nico Rosberg, in the other Mercedes, was 0.719s off the pace in fourth ahead of Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, who maintained his advantage over team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
Red Bull’s day was tainted when Ricciardo’s engine expired with 20 minutes remaining, the Australian pulling off the track at Turn 11 to bring out the red flag.
Hamilton set the early pace as the field ran the medium compound tyres and increased that advantage on his qualifying simulations on the softs before the teams turned their attention to long runs.
Carlos Sainz continued Toro Rosso’s strong form so far at the Hungaroring with the sixth quickest time with team-mate Max Verstappen, who missed a chunk of the session with a technical problem, 11th.
Vettel, who had two spins (at Turn 12 and Turn 1), was seventh quickest, just over half a second slower than team-mate Raikkonen.
McLaren’s hopes of a stronger weekend were boosted with Fernando Alonso finishing FP2 in eighth, 1.8s off the pace, and team-mate Jenson Button two tenths further back in 12th.
The Williams of Valtteri Bottas, who was running the team’s new front wing, and Felipe Massa completed the top 10.
Lotus bounced back from a troubled first session to get more than 70 laps on the board between Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean, with the duo finishing 13th and 15th overall.
The team’s tyres were late arriving for first practice, in what is understood to be a consequence of a late payment, and as a result it lost track time while they waited for the tyres to get into their working range.
Sauber’s team principal Monisha Kaltenborn conceded on Thursday that it would be a tough weekend for her team and it proved to be the case with Felipe Nasr 14th and Marcus Ericsson 16th.
Roberto Merhi ended up 17th quickest, just 0.002s ahead of Manor team-mate Will Stevens.
Force India chose to sit out the session as a precaution while the team continued to investigate an apparent suspension problem that caused Sergio Perez’s crash in first practice.
|2||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||0.351s||29|
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.502s||16|
|6||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.650s||37|
|11||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.986s||19|
Hungarian GP: Lewis Hamilton fastest, Sergio Perez rolls in F1 FP1
Lewis Hamilton topped the first Formula 1 free practice session at the Hungarian Grand Prix, which was interrupted by a dramatic roll for Sergio Perez after hitting the barriers.
Hamilton’s Mercedes was fastest in the first half-hour, when all drivers were on their first set of medium-compound Pirellis, and he had yet to use his second set when Perez crashed shortly before the one-hour mark.
The Force India driver had just emerged from the exit of the Turn 11 right-hander and was on the exit rumble strip when the rear snapped on him and pitched the Mexican into a spin.
Replays suggested that this was caused by a failure in the right-rear suspension, although this has yet to be confirmed.
Perez spun across the track and hit nose-first into the barrier, damaging the front-right suspension.
As he rebounded into the track, the deranged front wheel folded under the car and tipped him into a roll.
The Force India came to rest upside down, although Perez was able to get out quickly and was taken to the medical centre for a check-up before he returned to the pits on foot just over 10 minutes after the crash.
There, he was met by a pack of TV and radio crews – although he was still unsure as to the cause of the accident when it was put to him that he had a failure.
"It was a really bad accident, really unlucky," he told Sky Sports F1.
"I went in at the wrong angle, which made the car roll over, but everything’s all right.
"It was a bit of a strange accident, I thought I was under control but I guess the Astroturf was very dirty and that’s why I went into the wall, but we have to check everything in detail."
The session was restarted after a 15-minute halt, and after the stoppage Nico Rosberg worked his way down to a 1m25.250s, which was just under half-a-tenth faster than Hamilton’s early mark.
But at the same time, Hamilton improved to a 1m25.141s to end the session 0.109s faster than Rosberg to consolidate top spot.
The session was then interrupted by another red flag for debris on the track from the front wing of Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari, which failed as he was exiting the Turn 12 right-hander.
Although the Finn made it back to the pits, the track needed clearing and the session did not get back underway in time for any more improvements to be made, meaning only five drivers left the pits for the last 60 seconds of track time.
Raikkonen set third-fastest time before his incident, putting him ahead of the two Red Bulls of Daniels Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat.
They were the only three non-Mercedes cars within a second of the pace, as sixth-quickest Sebastian Vettel, who missed much of the first half-hour with an electrical problem, was 1.254s down.
Toro Rosso had another strong Friday session, with Carlos Sainz and Max Verstappen seventh and 10th respectively.
They sandwiched Perez and the Williams of Valtteri Bottas on the timesheets.
McLaren suggested that its hopes of a slightly improved performance at a less-power-dependent circuit are justified with Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button 11th and 12th fastest.
Lotus had a troubled session as a consequence of not getting hold of its tyres on Thursday, as would be usual. This is understood to be a consequence of a late payment.
The team got its tyres this morning, but while both cars completed an installation lap during the first half-hour running was restricted, with Pastor Maldonado and Jolyon Palmer – two of the drivers who did return to the track during the final one-minute mini-session – managed only 13 laps between them.
That meant Maldonado ended up 17th, while Palmer – who only did four laps – did not set a time.
He ended the session last, behind F1 weekend debutant and former GP2 champion Fabio Leimer.
The Swiss driver took over Roberto Merhi’s Manor and lapped 1.1s off the pace of team-mate Will Stevens.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||0.912s||20|
|5||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||0.929s||17|
|7||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.586s||25|
|8||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1.635s||14|
|10||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.793s||27|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||2.176s||11|
The harder the rubber, the harder it gets
Kimi ‘struggles a bit’ with the Prime tyre
Kimi Raikkonen: “Today we tried to do the maximum in the practice and it looks good, but it’s only Friday. It was not an easy day, anyway we learned something. We still have to improve and try to make it a bit more straightforward. We have no idea what the others were doing in the long run, we were focused on our session. The medium compound seems to be pretty ok, while the hard one is more difficult. For some reason I struggled a bit with that, but I don’t know if it was down to that set in particular or if the compound itself is more tricky here.”
Austrian GP: Lewis Hamilton beats Nico Rosberg to pole, both go off
Lewis Hamilton claimed pole position for the Austrian Grand Prix, as both Mercedes Formula 1 drivers went off during their final laps of the session.
Hamilton led the way after the first runs in Q3 by two tenths of a second from team-mate Nico Rosberg, but spun under braking for Turn 1 when attempting to make sure of the top spot.
Rosberg set a personal best time in the first sector, then the fastest time of all in the second sector, before going off at the final corner, which consigned him to second on the grid.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel improved on his final run in Q3, but his lap was only good enough for third, 0.155s slower than Rosberg’s earlier effort.
Last year’s Austrian GP poleman Felipe Massa was fourth fastest for Williams, while Le Mans 24 Hours winner Nico Hulkenberg superbly split Massa from his Williams team-mate Valtteri Bottas by recording the fifth fastest time for Force India.
Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen shaded Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat by less than a tenth of a second to post the seventh fastest time, as behind him Sauber’s Felipe Nasr recorded his best qualifying result since April’s Chinese GP by going ninth fastest.
Romain Grosjean’s Lotus failed to set a time in Q3, after a suspected brake by wire problem forced him back into the pits early on.
Team-mate Pastor Maldonado missed out on the top-10 shootout by 0.187s as track conditions improved in Q2, while Marcus Ericsson’s Sauber, the Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz, and Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull qualified on the same tenth of a second in 12th, 13th and 14th but some way adrift of their respective team-mates, who all made Q3.
Sainz complained of traffic on his fast lap, while Ricciardo briefly ran off the road at Turn 3 before failing to make the top-10 shootout for the first time this season.
Fernando Alonso managed to squeak his McLaren-Honda through to Q2, but the MP4-30’s lack of power left him adrift of the rest in 15th.
Improving track conditions throughout a Q1 that began damp meant laptimes tumbled as the session reached its climax, creating the potential for upsets.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was the highest-profile scalp in this segment, the Finn missing the Q2 cut by 0.359s and winding up 18th fastest, much to his own surprise over team radio.
Force India’s Sergio Perez also missed out, just 0.014s slower than Alonso’s McLaren at the death, while Alonso’s team-mate Jenson Button had been fastest at one point, before slipping back to 17th at the end.
Roberto Merhi outqualified his team-mate Will Stevens, who went off early on in the wetter conditions, by more than 1.3 seconds as the Manor Marussias again qualified slowest of all 20 cars.
Both McLarens and both Red Bulls will be hit with grid penalties for unscheduled engine changes this weekend, so will drop to the back of the grid when it is finalised.
|5||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m09.278s||0.823s|
|7||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m09.612s||1.157s|
|12||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m10.465s||–|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m12.522s||–|
|17||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m09.694s||–|
|18||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m10.482s||–|
Note: Kvyat, Ricciardo, Alonso and Button all have penalties
Austrian GP: Sebastian Vettel fastest in FP3 before rain hits
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was quickest in final Formula 1 practice for the Austrian Grand Prix, with rain mid-session preventing the leading teams from completing qualifying simulations.
The four-time world champion clocked a 1m09.994 on the soft compound tyres, 0.017s quicker than Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton with Kimi Raikkonen third in the other Ferrari.
With rain a distinct possibility for qualifying, several drivers went out on the full wet tyre when rain hit halfway through the session – although Hamilton was the only one of the frontrunners not to do so.
A number were caught out by the slippery conditions, with Vettel running off track at Turn 2 before recovering while Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz spun down at Turn 6.
Hamilton and Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg traded times at the top of the timesheets in the early part of the session before Vettel usurped them both.
Hamilton was on course to reclaim top spot, having clocked the fastest first and second sectors, but he ran wide after getting out of shape in the final corner.
Drivers were told rain was expected at the midpoint of the one-hour session, with Force India’s Sergio Perez – who had a puncture that Pirelli said was rim-related early on – reacting immediately.
The Mexican clocked the fourth fastest time on super-softs, but before Mercedes and Ferrari could get out on track on the softer tyre, McLaren’s Fernando Alonso brought out the red flag when he stopped on the pit straight.
As the marshals cleared Alonso’s car, which is heavily upgraded this weekend but will incur a penalty of at least 20 places due to engine component changes, rain began to fall.
Both Mercedes and Ferrari queued up at the end of the pitlane on the super-soft tyres, but by the time they headed out, the rain had intensified.
Rosberg and Raikkonen skated off track but kept their respective cars out of the barriers before retreating back to the pits.
Rosberg ended up fifth fastest, three tenths slower than team-mate Hamilton, ahead of the Williams’ of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas.
Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen was eighth with Lotus drivers Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean completing the top 10.
Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg – who said on Friday that it took him some time to get used to driving the car following his victory at Le Mans, was 11th with Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson’s 12th.
Sainz was 13th, and was told by his engineer that he was the fastest car on the wet tyre in the closing stages, ahead of Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat and Alonso.
Daniel Ricciardo had a quiet session in the other Red Bull, managing just 10 laps for 16th, but that was two more than Sauber’s Felipe Nasr completed in 17th.
McLaren’s Jenson Button was 18th, with the Manor-run Marussias of Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi bringing up the rear.
|4||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||0.227s||14|
|8||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||0.442s||23|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1.015s||14|
|13||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1.145s||18|
|14||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1.145s||14|
|16||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1.825s||10|
Austrian GP: Sebastian Vettel fastest for Ferrari before problems
Sebastian Vettel topped second practice for Formula 1’s Austrian Grand Prix, but then suffered further gearbox problems on his Ferrari.
Vettel had only completed four laps in the morning session due to a mechanical failure, and he spent the second part of practice two parked in the garage as well.
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton led the way when the field was on the slower soft-compound Pirelli tyres in the early part of the session, a tenth-and-a-half clear of Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen.
But Hamilton was unable to improve when he bolted on the super-soft tyres later in the session thanks to some off-track moments on his quick laps, one at Turn 1 and one when he ran wide after losing the rear through the final double right-hander.
Team-mate Rosberg did manage to improve after his first attempt to do so was undermined by a brief wide moment at the end of the lap, taking top spot for a while before Vettel pipped him by just 11 thousandths of a second.
Raikkonen found over four tenths on the quicker rubber to take third place ahead of Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado, who had a late off-track trip through the gravel at Turn 3 after a lock-up on entry.
This meant that Hamilton was shuffled down to fifth place, 0.537s off the pace, in the final reckoning just ahead of Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg.
Though Vettel had held the edge during the fast laps, he missed much of the long-run section of practice after being ordered to return to the garage with a gearbox problem soon after going out on heavier fuel.
Romain Grosjean made it two Lotuses in the top seven, followed by Toro Rosso driver Max Verstappen.
Felipe Nasr and Sergio Perez rounded out the top 10 ahead of Carlos Sainz, who had a trip through the gravel at Turn 5 but was able to rejoin and continue.
Daniil Kvyat could not carry over his form from the morning and ended up 12th ahead of Marcus Ericsson.
Williams pairing Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa, who locked out the front row in Austria in 2014, kept a low profile during the session – as is often the case for a team that usually only unleashes its real pace on Saturday.
This left the pair down in 14th and 15th places, ahead of the two McLarens of Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button, who sandwiched Daniel Ricciardo and also completed very limited running.
As always, Manor drivers Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi brought up the rear, albeit with Stevens only 2.922s off the pace on this relatively short circuit.
|6||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m10.160s||0.560s||49|
|8||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m10.356s||0.756s||48|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m10.585s||0.985s||46|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m10.631s||1.031s||50|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m10.686s||1.086s||48|
|17||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m11.676s||2.076s||38|
Austrian GP: Nico Rosberg sets pace, Sebastian Vettel has problems
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg topped the opening free practice session for Formula 1’s Austrian Grand Prix, while Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari stopped early and was last.
The 29-year-old took the initiative early in the session, when the field was running on its first set of soft-compound Pirelli that must be discarded after 30 minutes, setting a best time of 1m10.401s to put himself 1.1 seconds ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton.
While the fastest times overall are usually set in the final hour of the 90-minute session when drivers use their second set of tyres, pacesetter Rosberg did not improve.
But his time was good enough to stay fastest, because while Hamilton closed to 0.308s off Rosberg, a wide moment in the final corner and a big lock-up at Turn 1 prevented him from challenging his team-mate.
Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen, who had been third on first-run times, did not return to the track until late in the session and was able to retake his position as best-of-the-rest behind the two Mercedes drivers.
Valtteri Bottas was fourth fastest four Williams at the head of of a gaggle of cars, with just four tenths of a second covering positions fourth through to 10th.
Felipe Nasr was fifth fastest, capitalising on some clear track as both Sauber drivers headed out on their second sets of rubber earlier than most.
That put him ahead of Red Bull pairing Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo, with Toro Rosso driver Max Verstappen eighth fastest despite a lairy moment in the final corner earlier in his run that led him to describe the car over the radio as "unbelievably hard to drive".
Felipe Massa was ninth fastest after a brief scare shortly before the 30-minute mark when he was released from the Williams pit box just as Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene crossed from the pitwall.
Arrivabene jumped out of the way, while Massa stopped short of where the Ferrari boass had been, with the pair later sharing a joke about the moment.
Sergio Perez, who briefly ran as high as fourth on his second set of tyres, rounded out the top 10 ahead of Carlos Sainz, Pastor Maldonado and Force India team-mate Nico Hulkenberg.
Jolyon Palmer was the only non-race driver to participate, after taking over Romain Grosjean’s Lotus.
He was less than half-a-tenth off Maldonado in 14th place and ahead of Ericsson.
Jenson Button was 16th fastest, while McLaren-Honda team-mate Fernando Alonso was one place behind after losing much of the session.
The Spaniard was ordered to shut down his engine at the end of his installation lap as he returned to the pits, staying in the garage until the closing stages when he completed a further nine laps and at least posted a serious laptime.
That was more than fellow world champion Vettel managed for Ferrari, as the German ground to a halt on his fifth lap with what is believed to be a gearbox problem.
Although his car was returned to the pits, he was unable to return to the track and ended up behind Manor drivers Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi after being unable to set a serious laptime.
|6||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m11.642s||1.241s||31|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m11.724s||1.323s||29|
|8||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m11.825s||1.424s||38|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m11.905s||1.504s||37|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m11.948s||1.547s||32|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m12.031s||1.630s||36|
Canadian GP: Lewis Hamilton comfortably beats Nico Rosberg to pole
Lewis Hamilton comfortably defeated Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Nico Rosberg to claim pole position for the Canadian Grand Prix, while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel failed to escape Q1.
Rosberg described the conclusion to his session as "rubbish", as he ended up second best to Hamilton by three tenths of a second.
The Mercedes drivers were the only ones to lap below 1m15s around Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, and Hamilton’s 1m14.393s best on their first runs in Q3 stood as pole when neither he nor Rosberg improved on their second attempts.
With Vettel relegated to 16th place thanks to a suspected MGU-H problem, Kimi Raikkonen was the sole Ferrari representative in Q3.
The 2007 world champion had a big moment exiting Turn 4 on his best lap but it was still good enough for third on the grid.
Fellow Finn Valtteri Bottas managed a big improvement on his final run to join Raikkonen on row two for Williams and edge out the impressive Lotuses of Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado.
Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg produced his best qualifying effort of the season to qualify seventh, comfortably beating both Red Bulls and team-mate Sergio Perez, who rounded out the top 10.
Daniil Kvyat got the better of team-mate Daniel Ricciardo by less than a tenth to be best of the Red Bulls in eighth.
Carlos Sainz Jr was highest placed of those to miss out on the top-10 shootout by just 0.036s in a tight fight in Q2.
The Toro Rosso driver looked on to squeak into Q3 by splitting the Red Bulls until a late improvement by Kvyat.
The sister Toro Rosso of Max Verstappen was 12th fastest, but the Dutch teenager will start last on account of a 15-place grid drop for a combination of driving standards and engine penalities.
Verstappen was just 0.017s faster than Marcus Ericsson, who was 13th fastest and well clear of Sauber team-mate Felipe Nasr.
The Spaniard fell just 0.016s shy of beating both in the end and was over three tenths clear of Nasr, who qualified 15th fastest after crashing heavily in final free practice. Sauber managed to repair his car for him to join in halfway through Q1.
Jenson Button’s engine problem in final practice forced him to skip qualifying, which meant only four cars were eliminated in Q1.
Vettel swore over the radio when Ferrari told him his sole run in Q1 was only good enough for 16th spot, over three tenths adrift of Alonso’s McLaren as he limped around significantly down on power.
Felipe Massa was the other shock loser in this segment, half a second further back.
The Brazilian complained of a lack of power from his Williams’s Mercedes engine and he could do no better than 17th.
The Manor Marussias were predictably the slowest of the cars that ran in this session.
Roberto Merhi was best of the two for the first time this season with a time just 0.024s faster than team-mate Will Stevens.
|7||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m15.614s||1.221s|
|8||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.079s||1.686s|
|9||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.114s||1.721s|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.338s||1.945s|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.042s||–|
|19||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.245s||–|
Canadian GP: Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes fastest between red flags
Nico Rosberg topped the times in final practice for the Canadian Grand Prix, as two red flags limited running for the second successive session.
Teams had been hoping to gather crucial long-run data on the super-soft tyre after rain washed out more than half of second practice on Friday.
So drivers headed out onto the Montreal circuit early, with Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen setting the opening pace.
But the action was halted for 10 minutes when Felipe Nasr crashed heavily on the long straight as he appeared to weave aggressively in a bid to generate tyre temperature.
The Brazilian climbed out of the Sauber unscathed, but was taken to the circuit medical centre as a precaution.
There was significant damage to the front end of the car, leaving Nasr’s mechanics with a race against time to get the car ready for qualifying.
The session restarted with a little over 10 minutes remaining, with drivers bolting on the super-soft tyres to do a qualifying simulation.
But it was disrupted again when McLaren’s Jenson Button stopped at Turn 7 to being out the second red flag of the session.
Rosberg was able to get a super-soft run in to go fastest, but his team-mate Lewis Hamilton was not so successful after making a mistake on his first lap.
The session was not restarted after Button’s problem, which meant Rosberg’s time of 1m15.660s was the quickest time of the morning while Hamilton propped up the timesheets having not managed a single clean flying lap between mistakes and stoppages.
With so many drivers unable to complete a super-soft tyre run, teams will have limited data going into qualifying.
Raikkonen was second quickest overall for Ferrari, ahead of Lotus’s Romain Grosjean and the Williams of Valtteri Bottas.
Force India’s Sergio Perez managed a super-soft run to end up fifth, with Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat sixth and Williams’s Felipe Massa seventh.
Vettel, Carlos Sainz Jr and Pastor Maldonado completed the top 10.
Fernando Alonso managed just three laps after missing most of the session while McLaren fitted the fourth and final Honda engine of his allocation.
PRACTICE THREE TIMES:
|5||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.993s||1.333s||16|
|6||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.021s||1.361s||19|
|9||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.396s||1.736s||25|
|12||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.876s||2.216s||14|
|13||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.892s||2.232s||18|
|16||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m18.492s||2.832s||18|
Ferrari F1 team wants to help Kimi Raikkonen focus in qualifying
By Lawrence Barretto
The Ferrari Formula 1 team must improve the way it operates to ensure Kimi Raikkonen can fully focus on qualifying and improve his form, according to technical director James Allison.
Raikkonen has struggled on a Saturday afternoon all season, with his single-lap form negatively affecting his race results.
Team boss Maurizio Arrivabene has told Raikkonen to raise his game, while the Finn suggested getting the tyres to work is the key.
"With Kimi, very small things can distract a driver in qualifying," Allison said.
"They need absolute focus in those very important laps.
"We just have to make sure we remove all the tiny operation defects on our side to give him a clear path to focus on a clean lap.
"It’s all we can do."
Ferrari has used three of its engine token allocation for an upgrade package at this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix as the Scuderia aims to close the gap to Mercedes.
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg said: "Ferrari looks pretty close, so we need to look into that."
But Allison was more cautious.
"I hope it [the engine upgrade] will be strong and reliable all weekend," he said.
"I think we went quite well today, but I also think these chaps [Mercedes] are hiding their light under the bush at the minute."
Speaking about the update, Vettel, who finished 0.3s adrift of Lewis Hamilton, said: "There was no easing in, we went flat out straight away.
"Obviously time is very valuable and you try to get as much information as soon as possible and I think everything seemed to be working as expected."
Kimi Raikkonen – Just as we expected
“Today everything worked as we expected, we went on with our program trying as always to improve and we are quite happy with the way things worked. The weather was a bit tricky: the rain was expected in the afternoon, then we had to change a bit our program and decided certain things to be done in the morning. It’s hard to say where we are, because we did not get enough running, but it was all fine. It’s only Friday and we have to wait and see. There’s still a lot of work to be done to do well in qualifying, for sure here is easier compared to Monaco, but it will depend on many things, the weather conditions first of all. Tomorrow we’ll see where we are and then we’ll do the best over the weekend.”