Hamilton storms to second home pole

2013 British Grand Prix qualifying

Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Silverstone, 2013Lewis Hamilton will start the British Grand Prix from pole position for the second time in his career following a stunning lap that secured the top spot for the Mercedes driver by four tenths of a second.

Hamilton will share the front row of the grid with Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, with the Red Bull pairing of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber behind on the second row. Force India’s Paul di Resta will begin his home grand prix from fifth place, while Daniel Ricciardo took an impressive sixth place in the Toro Rosso.

Q1

In clear conditions with the wind running across the circuit, there was plenty of early action. Lotus’s Romain Grosjean set the initial pace, with the car emitting a shower of sparks through the fast Maggots, Becketts, Chapel section.

At the mid point of the session, the Mercedes drivers made their first outing. Lewis Hamilton lowered the benchmark to a 1’30.995 – the team’s fastest lap of the weekend.

As time expired in the first session, Ferrari’s Felipe Massa had just one lap to take him out of the drop-zone, and only just achieved it with a time that left him 14th. The battle over the final Q2 slot was then a straight fight between Williams teammates Valtteri Bottas and Pastor Maldonado, with the Venezulean just pipping the Finn to 16th by a tenth.

Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez was eliminated from Q1 for the sixth time in eight races, managing only 18th, while Marussia’s Jules Bianchi was 1.7 seconds quicker than Max Chilton.

Despite recieving a ten-place grid penalty for this weekend due to his Canadian Grand Prix collision with Mark Webber, Caterham’s Giedo van der Garde opted to set a time.

Drivers eliminated in Q1

17 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1’32.664
18 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1’32.666
19 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1’33.866
20 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1’34.108
21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1’35.481
22 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1’35.858

Q2

In the second session, the Mercedes teammates would once again occupy the top two places on the time sheets after the initial runs, with all drivers opting for Medium tyres.

Webber was told after his first effort of a 1’31.3 that he was on the edge of the expected cut off time and would need to run again, while Kimi Raikkonen’s first lap left him only ninth, a full second behind Hamilton.

With only six minutes remaining in the session, Sebastian Vettel took to the circuit for the first time. He would eclipse the Mercedes with a 1’30.990 – five thousandths of a second faster than Hamilton’s Q1 benchmark.

Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne ran wide at the exit of Becketts, ruining a lap that would otherwise have put him into the top ten at that stage in the session, and his second lap proved only good enough for a unfortunate 13th pace. The Frenchman’s misery was compounded by team mate Daniel Ricciardo comfortably qualifying for the final shoot-out with an impressive lap that put him fifth by the end of the session.

At their home circuit, McLaren suffered yet another disappointing Saturday afternoon, with both cars eliminated after Raikkonen just beat Jenson Button to tenth place. After his session-ending crash yesterday afternoon, Ferrari’s Felipe Massa struggled to match the pace of teammate Fernando Alonso, managing only 12th.

Unsurprisingly, the final eliminated drivers were Nico Hulkenberg in the Sauber and Pastor Maldonado in the sole-surviving Williams.

Drivers eliminated in Q2

11 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’31.649
12 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’31.779
13 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’31.785
14 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1’32.082
15 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1’32.221
16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1’32.359

Q3

The final shoot-out for pole looked set to be a three-way battle between the Mercedes teammates and Vettel.

Webber was the first to set a benchmark with a 1’30.508. That was immediately eclipsed by Rosberg, who was then himself beaten by Hamilton, who almost broke the 90 second barrier with a 1’30.096.

Vettel’s first effort put him fourth, while the two Force Indias and Raikkonen opted to remain in the pit lane in order to attempt just one flying lap each at the end of the session.

With the chequered flag flying, Webber’s second effort was not enough to beat Hamilton to provisional pole. Rosberg then took the top spot, just thousandths of a second faster than his team mate with a 1’30.059.

But it was not enough for Rosberg to secure his fourth pole of a season as Lewis Hamilton produced a stunning lap to snatch pole by four tenths with a 1’29.607 to the audible delight of the Silverstone crowd. Vettel’s second effort was not good enough to match the Mecedes, but it was enough to put him ahead of his teammate on the all Red Bull second row.

Force India will be delighted to have secured fifth and seventh on the grid with strong performances from di Resta and Sutil respectively, while Ricciardo consolidated his impressive Q2 showing by taking sixth place on the grid.

It was a surprising result for both Lotus drivers, with Grosjean and Raikkonen only able to manage eighth and ninth on the grid respectively, while Alonso and Ferrari will be perplexed by the performance of the F138 as the double world champion finished bottom of the session and will line up for tomorrow’s race from tenth on the grid.

Top ten in Q3

1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’29.607
2 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’30.059
3 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’30.211
4 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’30.220
5 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’30.736
6 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’30.757
7 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’30.908
8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1’30.955
9 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1’30.962
10 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’30.979

2013 British Grand Prix

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39 comments on Hamilton storms to second home pole

  1. tmax (@tmax) said on 29th June 2013, 14:38

    Great job Lewis

  2. tmax (@tmax) said on 29th June 2013, 14:39

    Looks like Ferrari has taken a step back….

    • Joshua Mesh (@joshua-mesh) said on 29th June 2013, 14:53

      Its not that. Lotus and Ferrari designed a car that puts less heat into their tyres in order to increase the tyres life. It worked really well at the start of the year before politics and the moaning of the fans forced them to change the tyres from the softer compounds to the hardest compounds.

      Ferrari and Lotus simply cannot get the same level of heat into the tyres that Merc and RBR can. So instead of the tyre becoming like tar and extracting the designs intended level of grip, Ferrari and Lotus’s tyres simply grain because they dont reach a high enough temp. That means their tyres dont last long and also dont give as much grip.

      So Lotus and Ferrari have been royally screwed and the two teams who were struggling (Merc and RBR) have been handed the advantage.

      • Raveendhana (@raveendhana) said on 29th June 2013, 15:00

        it seems these things have not affected for force india much, they are also kind to their tyres.

      • Jon Sandor (@jonsan) said on 29th June 2013, 15:34

        Give it a rest, man. At Monaco the tyres were supersofts and softs, at Montreal supersofts and mediums. And it did not help Lotus and Ferrari. At Barcelona, where Alonso won and Raikkonen came second, the tyres used were the two hardest compounds. Your theory is not supported by the facts.

        • Gaz said on 29th June 2013, 17:08

          Whether a tyre is ‘too hard’ or ‘too soft’ is entirely relative to the temperature and track surface of any given Grand Prix. Barcelona is quite a tough circuit on the tyres, hence why Pirelli chose the harder compounds. Montreal is relatively harsh, but the temperatures were not high that weekend which meant that those who were kind on their tyres still had a disadvantage. They should choose tyres at the start of the season and be done with it.

      • John H (@john-h) said on 29th June 2013, 18:36

        maybe the brain cells that control memory only operate selectively, depending on the results achieved on track by their owners

        (sorry, I couldn’t resist).

    • Slava (@slava) said on 29th June 2013, 16:20

      Obviously, Ferrari didn’t take any step comparing to its main rivals. Race is tomorrow but what you can do when you start 10th on the grid?
      In current trim SF is a terrible team. They have a lot of resources (including Alonso who is one of the best racers) and yet they can’t provide their racers with a fast car. I’m pretty sure that new rules that were proposed for teams in 2009 don’t correlate with what Ferrari doing in their “home”.
      Terrible team, terrible management.

  3. OmarR-Pepper (@omarr-pepper) said on 29th June 2013, 14:41

    Lewis Hamilton will start the British Grand Prix from pole position

    Unless something has changed the silver cars really deeply for race pace, that pole only means Saturday’s joy for his crowd, and little for tomorrow (I’m the party crusher maybe)

  4. tmax (@tmax) said on 29th June 2013, 14:42

    Oh boy I am seriously starting to Notice Force India now. They are regulars in q3 nowadays. Maybe Alonso might be leading the championship if he had that Force India instead of Ferrari :)

  5. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 29th June 2013, 14:42

    Great lap by Hamilton, but I fear this weekend will show the pattern for the rest of the Championship – Mercedes imperious on Saturday, followed by Red Bull. Mercedes drop back on Sunday and Vettel swoops in for victory. Ferrari and Lotus appear incapable of qualifying well enough often enough to stop Vettel from expanding his points advantage. Beginning of the end for the Championship battle? I think so.

    • John H (@john-h) said on 29th June 2013, 18:39

      I agree, this is the end of the championship unless Vettel starts to suffer some car failures, which is unlikely. It’s a shame for us viewers, but I think it will be deserved.

    • Nick (@nick101) said on 29th June 2013, 21:03

      Guys, guys, guys…are we all forgetting the totally illegal but totally un-punished 1000km test that Mercedes did with two blokes in ‘anonymous’ helmets?

      I don’t think they’ll drop off too much at all any more. We can all hope that the cheats get the karma due to them, but I don’t think they will.

  6. Raveendhana (@raveendhana) said on 29th June 2013, 14:46

    To been seen whether mercedes have gained anything from their test with pirelli, and good job by force india, too bad for nico hulkenberg if there is mid season transfer window he will take it.

  7. Zantkiller (@zantkiller) said on 29th June 2013, 14:52

    A great lap from Hamilton.

    Brilliant performances from Force India and Ricciardo as well.

  8. clay (@clay) said on 29th June 2013, 14:52

    15-0 for the vacant RBR seat to Ricciardo after this quali effort. Sixth at Silverstone beats JEV’s effort in Canada. I just hope that Dan’s race is at least as good as his qualification! Go STR!

  9. Sergio Perez (@sergio-perez) said on 29th June 2013, 14:59

    Not having a good feeling for this championship. The Mercedes test raised a lot of questions. At the same time, after the big tyre debate, Pirelli is starting to bring conservative tyres to racing weekends, which are making the teams that were good with the original aggressive tyres less competitive. I complained about the tyre situation, but it has to be fair. You shouldn’t be able to change the rules in the middle of the championship. Very unfair to those that got it right, in this case, Ferrari and Lotus.

    I’m a Mclaren fan and seeing the disaster that was their qualifying makes me really concerned about the team’s future. Hiring a middle of the table designer doesn’t seem like a big step forward. They need an exceptional – top 3 driver- and none of the current line-up are it. Promote Magnussen, or hire back Kimi, Mclaren. And bring back Dennis and put Martin on the road car division!

    • Jon Sandor (@jonsan) said on 29th June 2013, 15:46

      There were no “original” tyres. The tyres brought to Silverstone were the tyres brought to Silverstone – there was no change from any “original” tyres.

    • Nick (@nick101) said on 29th June 2013, 21:21

      They need an exceptional – top 3 driver- and none of the current line-up are it

      Really?

      Drivers who have finished in the top three positions of the WDC in the last 4 years;
      Sebastian Vettel – 4 times
      Fernando Alonso – 2 times
      Jenson Button – 2 times
      Mark Webber – 2 time
      Kimi Raikkonen – 1 time
      Rubens Barrichello – 1 time

      So considering McLaren already have a top 3 driver in Button, who would you suggest from the list above that they replace Perez with?

  10. Glenn (@glennb) said on 29th June 2013, 15:01

    I’m far from Lewis’ biggest fan but credit where it’s due. Absolute gem of a lap.
    Go Webber!

  11. salcrich said on 29th June 2013, 15:11

    I know its not relevant to the thread but what a great job DC has got – driving Jim Clark’s Lotus, Red Arrows ride. Who needs an F1 seat??

  12. AlokIn (@alokin) said on 29th June 2013, 15:12

    what a phenomenal lap from Lewis !!

  13. MaroonJack (@maroonjack) said on 29th June 2013, 15:15

    Keith, you have Esteban Gutierrez on 15th and 18th position, while Hulk is missing entirely ;)

  14. vishy (@vishy) said on 29th June 2013, 15:17

    It has been almost 8 weeks and 2 grand prix since Mercs did their test. In this time Ferrari/Lotus have gone backward and Red Bull/Force India have gone forward. Why is it so hard for people to believe that Mercs might have made a good step forward in this time. Why does it have to be only because of the test?? People whining about Merc are starting to sound like Horner clowns. ooops sorry I meant Clones.

  15. FastKing said on 29th June 2013, 15:37

    Secret Test you say? wasn’t Mercedes sticking it on Pole before the test? Or is my memory failing me?

    • Nick (@nick101) said on 29th June 2013, 21:23

      They sure were, but they were also going from 1st and 2nd position to 6th and 12th position during the race.

      Something tells me (wonder what) that this won’t happen tomorrow.

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