Eifel GP Qualifying As it happened: Bottas takes pole, Leclerc 4th!

Drivers have only had one hour of practice in the lead up to qualifying

6 mins read

Hulk starts last after super late call-up.
Vettel out in Q2 in 11th.
Leclerc the lone Ferrari in the top 10
Bottas takes pole for the first time in 6 races.

All done till tomorrow then. Bottas hasn’t raced here in F1 apart from his rookie year in 2013 so Hamilton will have a slight experience edge for the race but nobody has raced here since 2013 anyway so that might not even be a factor.

Can Red Bull find that spark again that they threatened with up until the last runs today?

Lights out at 13.10 coverage will start on Brig from 12:45.

That was a bit of an anti-climax, can we get the first run times back?

1Valtteri Bottas77Mercedes1:26.5731:25.971 1:25.269
2Lewis Hamilton44Mercedes1:26.6201:25.3901:25.525
3Max Verstappen33Red Bull1:26.3191:25.4671:25.562
4Charles Leclerc16Ferrari1:26.8571:26.2401:26.035
5Alexander Albon23Red Bull1:27.1261:26.2851:26.047
6Daniel Ricciardo3Renault1:26.8361:26.0961:26.223
7Esteban Ocon31Renault1:27.0861:26.3641:26.242
8Lando Norris4McLaren1:26.8291:26.3161:26.458
9Sergio Perez11Racing Point1:27.1201:26.3301:26.704
10Carlos Sainz Jnr55McLaren1:27.3781:26.3611:26.709

Purple sectors by both Mercedes drivers but Bottas just edges it and beats Hamilton at the line.
Max couldn’t hang on and ends up almost three tenths off pole, but just 0.047 behind Lewis.
Albon gets pipped to 4th by Leclerc. where did that come from?

Here we go, final runs about to start.

Oh, this is getting right exciting now.
Max is on course to snatch the first pole of the season away from Mercedes.
Max in 1st, followed by bottas by 0.068 and then Hamilton by 0.081

Anyone dare to put the student loan on who comes out on top here?

And then there were 10.
Difficult one to call at the sharp end of the grid this weekend.
Can Leclerc buoy Ferrari and grab a decent starting position for the first time in what feels like an age?

Q2 Eliminations:

11Sebastian Vettel5Ferrari1:27.1071:26.738
12Pierre Gasly10AlphaTauri1:27.0721:26.776
13Daniil Kvyat26AlphaTauri1:27.2851:26.848
14Antonio Giovinazzi99Alfa Romeo1:27.5321:26.936
15Kevin Magnussen20Haas1:27.2311:27.125

Leclerc knocks out Vettel by jumping up to 5th and pushing Vettel down to 11th.

It wasn’t even close, the German adrift of Ocon by four-tenths.
Seven races in a row now he hasn’t made the top 10.

Ok then, strategy be damned.
Both Mercs go out and set faster laps on the softer compound to jump up to provisional pole with Hamilton and 3rd with Bottas.

Albon is looking fast this weekend, well, faster than normal.

Mercedes have sent out their drivers on the mediums compared to the softs for both Red Bulls. Bottas is over 1.2 secs off the pace on his run with a couple of scruffy moments, but Hamilton is only 4 tenths off of Max.

If they can’t beat them on the timing sheets today, they will hope to out strategize them tomorrow.

Q2 now, and we focus on the midfield in this session to see who can get into the top 10.

These two are keen to get out and re-establish their dominance at the front of the grid over a certain young Red Bull driver.

Q1 Eliminations:

16Romain Grosjean8Haas1:27.552
17George Russell63Williams1:27.564
18Nicholas Latifi6Williams1:27.812
19Kimi Raikkonen7Alfa Romeo1:27.817
20Nico Hulkenberg27Racing Point1:28.021

Hulk pushed for all he was worth, but missing out on practice means there was really no chance of him getting out of Q1 and wont have an easy day tomorrow.

This car will be parked up and staying in situ now till tomorrow.

Both Racing Points in the bottom five now. Perez 16th Hulk 19th.
Perez taking to the track for his last run now.

Oi oi, Verstappen is leading by 3 tenths over Hamilton and 0.254 off of Bottas.
Have we got a false dawn again? Please not.

To be fair to Hulk, Perez isn’t far off the danger zone either, just safe by less than a hundredth of a second.

Hulk lays down a 1:32.190 that’s about 4 secs off the pace of the backmarkers. He’s gonna need to improve and improve quickly if he wants to get out of this session.

Pitlane light goes green, and now the drivers will need to rely on their talent more than usual this weekend. I suspect Hulk will be out for a lot longer than most in this session.

Have Ferrari turned a corner? Or has circumstances ended up flattering the Maranello outfit? I suspect it might be the later.

The Nurburgring isn’t a big power circuit anymore, and the lack of time for their competitors to dial in a setup might have played into their hands.

Welcome back to another live coverage of the Formula One championship here on Brig.

Not a lot to go on for today as Friday practice was completely wiped out so the drivers have all only had this mornings 1 hour session to get to grips with a track we havent been to since 2013.

Still, Mercedes 1-2 this morning, can they carry on the pace into this afternoon?

And can Nico Hulkenburg, a late late call up to replace Lance Stroll, do anything without a sniff of practice or a drive for over a month?

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