Hamilton keeps Vettel from pole with last-gasp effort

2013 Hungarian Grand Prix qualifying

Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Hungaroring, 2013Lewis Hamilton snatched pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix from Sebastian Vettel in a thrilling qualifying session.

The Mercedes driver claimed his fourth pole position of the year by less than four-hundredths of a second.

Q1

Qualifying took place in sweltering conditions at the Hungaroring with the track surface temperature hitting 50C early in Q1.

Esteban Gutierrez was the first driver to take to the track after Sauber installed a new engine in his car following his practice problems. Fellow Mexican Sergio Perez also required last-minute repairs to his car after practice and was able to get back on track.

However Gutierrez failed to make it any further, dropping out in Q1 for the sixth time this year.

Paul di Resta has missed out on Q2 twice earlier this year due to tactical errors in mixed conditions. He got no further than Q1 again today but this time the cause was a simple lack of performance.

“Where did the the grip gp?” asked a bemused Di Resta after qualifying 18th. Only the Caterhams and Marussias were behind him .

Drivers eliminated in Q1

17 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1’21.724
18 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’22.043
19 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1’23.007
20 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1’23.333
21 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1’23.787
22 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1’23.997

Q2

Vettel was the first driver to get under the 80-second barrier in Q2, his lap good enough to secure him a place in Q3 without having to use another set of soft tyres.

But team mate Mark Webber was in trouble: an electrical problem stopped the ‘quick shift’ feature from working on his gearbox and deprived him of KERS. Despite the problems he still managed to drag his car into Q3.

The Mercedes pair beat Vettel’s time with their subsequent runs to secure their places in the final ten. But the margin between reaching Q3 and failing was narrow.

Daniel Ricciardo grabbed a Q3 spot with a lap of 1’20.527. He was just two hundredths of a second off Webber’s time, and Perez was the same margin behind him.

Adrian Sutil and Nico Hulkenberg were both within four-hundredths of a second of Perez, but both were on the wrong side of the cut.

Drivers eliminated in Q2

11 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’20.569
12 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1’20.580
13 Jenson Button McLaren 1’20.777
14 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’21.029
15 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1’21.133
16 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1’21.219

Q3

The Mercedes driver led the way to begin with, Hamilton ahead of Rosberg but both around half a second off their Q2 pace as they began Q3 on used soft tyres.

But Vettel had an extra set of fresh rubber on hand. He looked on course to claim the top spot in Q3 when he lapped eight tenths of a second quicker than his pursuers.

He lowered that mark even further with his final run. But Hamilton found a little bit more, lapping in 1’19.388 to deny Vettel the coveted pole position place by less than four hundredths of a second.

Grosjean had been within range of the top times throughout the session but despite a small mistake at the final corner he didn’t believe he had the pace for pole position. He took third ahead of Rosberg.

Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen will share the third row. Webber did not set a time in Q3 due to his car problems.

Top ten in Q3

1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’19.388
2 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’19.426
3 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1’19.595
4 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’19.720
5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’19.791
6 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1’19.851
7 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’19.929
8 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’20.641
9 Sergio Perez McLaren 1’22.398
10 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault

2013 Hungarian Grand Prix

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45 comments on Hamilton keeps Vettel from pole with last-gasp effort

  1. Manished said on 27th July 2013, 15:20

    Merc train tomorrow like Monaco???

    Lewis has the best chance to win in such narrow circuit. Singapore will be another one.

  2. gwenouille (@gwenouille) said on 27th July 2013, 15:24

    Great work by Hamilton. Puts this “schocking pace” comment into perspective…
    Well done Romain Grosjean too. I hops Lotus won’t do a Ferrari trick and change his gearbox so that Kimi gets the clean side of the track. Team orders are ok, but that would be … disgusting. I hope he scores another podium, as his pace throughout FPs and Qualis has been remarkable. He has to survive the 1st corner though…
    I’ll try to keep an eye on the RIC/VER battle too…

    • Manished said on 27th July 2013, 15:32

      why would Lotus does a ferrari trick?? Grosjean has to move out of the way previously because his teammate was on diff strategy and lapping faster.

    • scuderia_fan85 (@scuderia_fan85) said on 27th July 2013, 15:49

      i hope the “dirty” side is not that much of a problem for drivers.

    • svarun (@svarun) said on 27th July 2013, 16:36

      The conditions you are referring to are totally different.
      Alonso was fighing vettel for the WDC and was 10 points only behind in abu dhabi and thus wanted to reduce the gap
      Whereas here we are in mid season,so such things are not expected.
      Even ferrari would not have done it had Alonso not been in contention for WDC.

      • Manished said on 27th July 2013, 17:05

        Its common sense not to compromise your teammate when the strategy was different.

        Merc, rbr, ferrari, Lotus and others have done it so far. Though Merc was weird to stop the faster rosberg from overtaking the slower lewis in malaysia. ROFL

        Its not team order. Its common sense to let your faster teammate through based on different strategy run. Otherwise, no point doing so.

  3. Eggry (@eggry) said on 27th July 2013, 15:27

    Great lap from Hamilton. You’re the saviour!

  4. Yud (@yud77) said on 27th July 2013, 15:40

    1 time in the last 9 race in hungry won by pull sitter
    4 time in last 9 race won from the dirty side of the grid

    seb got it in the bag

  5. Klaas (@klaas) said on 27th July 2013, 15:42

    What a surprise to see Webber having problems with his RB9.
    With Vettel to far away in the WDC table, Mercedes should really push for the WCC this season, they have a real chance there.

  6. PMccarthy_is_a_legend (@pmccarthy_is_a_legend) said on 27th July 2013, 15:46

    Good job by Grosjean, Lewis done well too, lets see how the tyres hold up tomorrow. Hungary isn’t as hard to overtake as Monaco (though it isn’t easy either) but turn 1 is a good spot as the entry is quite wide. I think that if Mercedes tyres don’t last this is between the Lotuses and Red Bull (Vettel) with Fernando as a dark horse.

  7. Deurmat (@deurmat) said on 27th July 2013, 15:52

    Why is it that only Mark Webber’s Red Bulll has problems and NEVER Vettels? This KERS problem for Mark has been going on for more than 2 years now…

  8. scuderia_fan85 (@scuderia_fan85) said on 27th July 2013, 15:52

    it would be great for Romain to get past Vettel, hold him up to allow Kimi to get close

  9. MG421982 (@) said on 27th July 2013, 16:01

    And if Mercs have a problem with the tyres… it’s their problem !

  10. Meander (@meander) said on 27th July 2013, 16:10

    I really hope we don’t get a situation in which Grosjean has to give up his maiden win. He has been genuinely on the pace this weekend and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him out front at some point tomorrow.

    • Lari (@lari) said on 27th July 2013, 18:21

      @meander Crashjean will give up his win on his own to either one of the front runners, or if he gets penalized for his new floor, then he gives it up to either Marussia or Caterham drivers :D

  11. karter22 (@karter22) said on 27th July 2013, 16:20

    Nice Qualy! Lewis went HAM at the hungaroring! Grosjean just made Kimi look slow and SV´s look when it was all over was priceless!!
    ALO once again keeping Ferrari true! I hope he can have one of his trademark starts and get in front of SV so he can add some good points!

    Anybody wanna put some money down on GRO´s start tomorrow?? I predict he takes somebody out!!

  12. Deej92 (@deej92) said on 27th July 2013, 19:24

    Ricciardo continues to impress, reaching Q3 for the fourth time in a row. Toro Rosso didn’t look good in the practice sessions but he keeps delivering for them, and he’s only two places down from Raikkonen.

  13. Kingszito said on 27th July 2013, 20:15

    We should have nothing but respect for all these drivers. I am not against criticizing a driver when he deserves it, but calling them names is not fair. I am a fan of only One driver, but yet I have lots of respect for each and everyone of them. Grosjean made mistakes last season and paid the prize and since then he has been doing his best to be a better driver. Today he did well, so instead of calling him names, we should try to encourage his brilliant quali lap today.

  14. Master firelee (@master-firelee) said on 27th July 2013, 21:10

    I can see Hamilton immediately attempting to cover Vettel off the line and braking too late into the first corner forcing Vettel out wide, then Grosjean slips up the inside followed by Alonso who got a great start as usual then Rosberg and Raikkonen putting Hamilton 5th and Vettel 6th.

  15. Jason (@jason12) said on 27th July 2013, 21:43

    AMAZING LAP from Lewis.

    He truly is just the best out there!

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