Emilia-Romagna GP Qualifying LIVE: Bottas strikes back

F1 returns to the scene of the accident

5 mins read

We are back tomorrow, with lights out at 12:10.
Action on the track could either be sparse or wheel touching tight as the track is quite narrow.
Hamilton will be looking to extend his winning record, but Bottas really needs to start reeling him in if he wants to have an outside chance of taking the title if Lewis has any non-scores going into the final four races.


Gasly was wearing a Senna inspired tribute helmet design today, and he did his hero proud finishing the session on the 2nd row

The radio conversation between Bottas and his engineer was typical Bottas

E: “That was close mate. That’s P1 mate!”
B: “Yes! How close?”
E: “A tenth.”
B: “That’s enough.”

Bottas snatches the pole by just under a tenth from his teammate, his 15th of his career, to deny Lewis his 98th.

A snapshot of Hamilton’s drive to the line on his first run. Honest.

The unexpected race winner at that other Italian track, Gasly, is currently sitting pretty in 4th.
The Alpha Tauris are really strong here.
Albon has another time deleted and is the only driver not to set a time going into the final runs.

Scruffy but fast lap for Hamilton as he dips into the 1:13:7s
Bottas less than half a tenth behind. You have to wonder what Hamilton has in the bag if he pulls it all together in his next run.

Q3 underway.
Bit of argy-bargy in the pitlane as Ricciardo is released in front of Max and the Red Bull has to hit the breaks to avoid slamming into the Aussies gearbox.

Well it paid off, Albon beating Max at the line as well.
Vettel again out in Q2, both Racing Points have also missed out.

Q2 Eliminations:

11Sergio Perez11Racing Point1:15.4071:15.061
12Esteban Ocon31Renault1:15.3521:15.201
13George Russell63Williams1:15.7601:15.323
14Sebastian Vettel5Ferrari1:15.5711:15.385
15Lance Stroll18Racing Point1:15.8221:15.494

You’d think they were all safe and through with both drivers with Red Bull sending their drivers out on the mediums compounds, this could get messy with any mistakes given we have less than 2mins left.

Just to add to the drama, Albon spins his Red Bull and pits with flat-spots, currently, both Red Bull drivers are in the elimination zone.

Christian Horner says it was a spark-plug issue on Max’s car, and he should get through no problem.

Engine cover off in the pits for the young pretender. Not looking good.

“No power” the call comes over the radio from Max Verstappen, if he is outscored by 10 points this weekend by Hamilton, he’s out of the title race.

I have to say, this track looks ever so fast and fun to drive, it really is a shame the guest tracks this year couldn’t make it to the F1 video game.

Once again George Russell doesn’t have his name in my Q1 list, if he is papped from Williams for Perez next season it will be criminal.

Q1 Drop-outs:

16Romain Grosjean8Haas1:15.918
17Kevin Magnussen20Haas1:15.939
18Kimi Raikkonen7Alfa Romeo1:15.953
19Nicholas Latifi6Williams1:15.987
20Antonio Giovinazzi99Alfa Romeo1:16.208

No K-mag, that’s not the fastest part of the track.

With five minutes to go and Hamilton on top, the field finds itself in a Mercedes sandwich as Bottas is in the unenviable position of plum last.

Squeaky bum time as both Bottas and Albon get their times deleted and are sitting 18th and 19th with just 7 minutes left, no room for errors now.

Different set-up for this weekend, no friday running, with just a 90 minute session this morning, so every driver is out there trying to run qualifying without having fully dialed in the track.
With 10 minutes to go we have two Alpha Tauris in the top 5, and a Ferrari leading, this Qualifying session could get really interesting.

It’s a circuit full of memories, 26 years after that fateful weekend where Ratzenberger and Senna both lost their lives here, and 14 years after F1 was last here to race, we are back at Imola

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Have a creative flair, and not scared to rock the boat.

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