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Hamilton takes pole at dramatic Spa qualifying

  • Published on 25 Aug 2018 16:00
  • comments 1
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Lewis Hamilton has taken his 78th career pole position at the Spa-Francorchamps Circuit, edging out rival Sebastian Vettel in a dramatic final session. Hamilton bet Vettel by seven-tenths of a second, on a track that was drying towards the end of Q3.

The rain stayed away from the track during the first two qualifying sessions, but a sudden downpour caught the drivers out at the start of Q3. Having all exited the pits on dry tyres, the drivers were forced to come back in straight away to fit the intermediate compound.

The cars were fuelled up for plenty of laps when the rain eased off and track conditions started improving. Despite setting his last lap time after Hamilton, Vettel failed to beat the 1:58.179 set by his British rival.

After entering the weekend not knowing if they were going to race at all, Force India locked out the second row of the grid, and will line-up in 3rd and 4th place on Sunday. Esteban Ocon, whose future in the sport is up in the air, headed Sergio Perez.

Romain Grosjean got his Haas car into P5, ahead of Kimi Raikkonen. The Finn couldn't make it out in the final stages of the session, as it appeared Ferrari didn't fuel his car for another run.

Red Bull will be left disappointed following the session, as it has been forced to settle with the fourth row. Max Verstappen got the better of Daniel Ricciardo, with the energy drink squad failing to take advantage of the changing conditions.

Kevin Magnussen couldn't manage better than 9th place, while Valtteri Bottas finished 10th. The Finn didn't set a time in the final qualifying session due to the fact he will line-up at the back of the field tomorrow after going over his engine allocation limit this weekend.

It was a miserable day for McLaren, who suffered a double Q1 exit. Stoffel Vandoorne will take up the final position at his home Grand Prix on Sunday, two spaces behind teammate Fernando Alonso, who will walk away from the sport at the end of the year.

The other big shock from the first session was Carlos Sainz failing to make it out. However, he will line-up alongside his teammate Nico Hulkenberg for the race, who was the slowest out of the runners in Q2.   

Sauber will be pleased with getting both cars into the second stage of qualifying, ending up just behind the two Toro Rossos, who narrowly missed out on the final qualifying session.

 

Fergal Walsh 

BE Spa-Francorchamps - 25 August 2018

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  • Rick F1

    Posts: 1,883

    Qualifying 2018 - Belgium

    Time (speed trap) | Sector 1 (speed intermediate 1) | Sector 2 (speed intermediate 2) | Sector 3 (speed finishlijn) | Tyre (number of laps stint / total) - Temperature Track / Air | Driver

    —— Q3 (all fast laps) ——

    1:58.179 293 | 33.242, 316 | 53.382, 169 | 31.555, 214 | I 4/4, 20/12 | HAM
    2:03.053 264 | 35.929, 305 | 55.257, 179 | 31.867, 213 | I 2/2, 20/13 | HAM

    1:58.905 289 | 33.242, 309 | 53.776, 182 | 31.887, 216 | I 4/4, 20/12 | VET
    2:01.188 277 | 33.463, 318 | 54.625, 175 | 33.100, 219 | I 3/3, 20/12 | VET

    2:01.851 291 | 33.097, 310 | 56.560, 178 | 32.194, 211 | I 3/3, 20/12 | OCO
    2:03.955 278 | 33.494, 313 | 58.040, 178 | 32.421, 212 | I 2/2, 20/12 | OCO

    2:01.894 277 | 33.716, 311 | 55.773, 175 | 32.405, 206 | I 2/2, 20/12 | PER

    2:02.122 264 | 34.102, 309 | 55.651, 174 | 32.369, 213 | I 4/4, 20/12 | GRO
    2:05.203 273 | 35.401, 307 | 56.114, 165 | 33.688, 208 | I 3/3, 20/12 | GRO

    2:02.446 245 | 34.152, 313 | 55.821, 178 | 32.473, 216 | I 2/2, 20/12 | VET

    2:02.671 257 | 33.499, 313 | 56.980, 181 | 32.192, 208 | I 2/2, 20/13 | RAI

    2:02.769 288 | 33.947, 306 | 56.245, 179 | 32.577, 195 | I 3/3, 20/12 | VER
    2:02.849 276 | 33.344, 323 | 57.217, 180 | 32.288, 208 | I 2/2, 20/13 | VER

    2:02.939 273 | 33.844, 278 | 56.475, 183 | 32.620, 205 | I 3/3, 20/12 | RIC
    2:04.986 272 | 34.434, 315 | 57.747, 175 | 32.805, 211 | I 2/2, 20/13 | RIC

    2:04.933 266 | 34.702, 306 | 57.024, 168 | 33.207, 202 | I 2/2, 20/13 | MAG
    2:05.744 248 | 34.932, 309 | 58.062, 173 | 32.750, 206 | I 3/3, 20/12 | MAG

    0:00.000 | BOT

    —— Q2 (fastest laps) ——

    1:41.501 312 | 29.885, 332 | 43.496, 213 | 28.120, 231 | SS 2/2, 25/14 | VET
    1:41.533 311 | 29.957, 328 | 43.441, 217 | 28.135, 232 | SS 2/2, 25/14 | RAI
    1:41.553 311 | 30.217, 334 | 43.115, 220 | 28.221, 229 | SS 2/2, 25/15 | HAM
    1:42.191 309 | 30.262, 329 | 43.521, 218 | 28.408, 229 | S 2/2, 25/15 | BOT
    1:42.554 310 | 30.421, 326 | 43.909, 216 | 28.224, 226 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | VER
    1:43.014 315 | 29.963, 335 | 44.663, 209 | 28.388, 229 | SS 2/2, 25/15 | PER
    1:43.042 310 | 30.258, 330 | 44.140, 206 | 28.644, 226 | SS 2/2, 25/15 | GRO
    1:43.126 313 | 30.369, 327 | 44.429, 213 | 28.328, 227 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | RIC
    1:43.302 314 | 30.154, 334 | 44.821, 210 | 28.327, 228 | SS 2/2, 25/15 | OCO
    1:43.320 311 | 30.294, 329 | 44.496, 212 | 28.530, 225 | SS 2/2, 26/15 | MAG

    1:43.844 304 | 30.633, 326 | 44.560, 211 | 28.651, 226 | SS 2/2, 26/15 | GAS
    1:43.865 308 | 30.410, 328 | 44.845, 207 | 28.610, 224 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | HAR
    1:44.062 306 | 30.600, 326 | 44.658, 212 | 28.804, 222 | SS 2/2, 25/15 | LEC
    1:44.301 304 | 30.805, 323 | 44.678, 213 | 28.818, 224 | SS 2/2, 26/15 | ERI
    0:00.000 | HUL

    —— Q1 (fastest laps) ——

    1:42.585 312 | 30.331, 332 | 44.070, 216 | 28.184, 229 | S 2/2, 28/15 | RAI
    1:42.805 307 | 30.685, 326 | 43.689, 217 | 28.431, 227 | SS 2/2, 27/14 | BOT
    1:42.977 311 | 30.645, 332 | 43.892, 214 | 28.440, 226 | S 5/5, 26/14 | HAM
    1:43.035 311 | 30.274, 334 | 44.326, 208 | 28.435, 229 | S 2/2, 28/15 | VET
    1:43.199 306 | 30.582, 322 | 44.273, 213 | 28.344, 223 | SS 2/2, 26/15 | VER
    1:43.597 311 | 30.417, 325 | 44.699, 209 | 28.481, 226 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | GRO
    1:43.604 312 | 30.670, 327 | 44.485, 212 | 28.449, 224 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | RIC
    1:43.654 309 | 30.618, 323 | 44.439, 213 | 28.597, 222 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | LEC
    1:43.834 312 | 30.314, 328 | 45.010, 208 | 28.510, 225 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | MAG
    1:43.846 312 | 30.532, 328 | 44.765, 211 | 28.549, 227 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | ERI
    1:44.003 312 | 30.332, 331 | 45.238, 209 | 28.433, 227 | SS 2/2, 26/14 | OCO
    1:44.004 311 | 30.520, 333 | 44.995, 209 | 28.489, 227 | SS 2/2, 26/14 | PER
    1:44.145 302 | 30.687, 326 | 44.859, 209 | 28.599, 228 | SS 2/2, 26/14 | HUL
    1:44.153 302 | 30.801, 322 | 44.795, 213 | 28.557, 226 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | HAR
    1:44.221 306 | 30.812, 323 | 44.764, 208 | 28.645, 226 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | GAS

    1:44.489 304 | 30.755, 326 | 44.941, 208 | 28.793, 226 | SS 2/2, 26/14 | SAI
    1:44.917 306 | 30.746, 331 | 45.367, 208 | 28.804, 226 | SS 2/2, 26/15 | ALO
    1:44.998 306 | 30.824, 320 | 45.221, 211 | 28.953, 225 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | SIR
    1:45.134 307 | 30.732, 325 | 45.650, 208 | 28.752, 225 | SS 2/2, 27/15 | STR
    1:45.307 306 | 31.066, 321 | 45.576, 205 | 28.665, 223 | SS 3/3, 27/15 | VAN

    —— TYRES FOR THE RACE - TOP 10 ——

    Bottas: Soft
    Others: SuperSoft

    • + 0
    • Aug 26 2018 - 09:16
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