Another record breaking day for Lewis Hamilton as he secured pole position for Sunday’s British Grand Prix. Now he has to pray nothing goes wrong tomorrow and he can win this race for a record fifth time.
As is often the case, Lewis was able to produce a great lap to take pole. That equals the record of five pole positions at the British Grand Prix set by the great Jim Clark. He finished 0.547 seconds faster than Kimi Raikkonen in second with Championship leader Sebastian Vettel back in third and 0.756 seconds behind Hamilton. Valtteri Bottas was fourth fastest but that gearbox change means he’ll be down in ninth place when the race starts tomorrow. The Red Bull of Max Verstappen finished fifth. It wasn’t such good news for his team mate Daniel Ricciardo. His Red Bull had a suspected turbo failure in Q1 and will start at the back of the grid.
The Renault of Nico Hulkenburg was sixth just ahead of the Force Indias. Hulkenburg’s improved performance comes after a new floor being fitted. There was good news for Jolyon Palmer in his Renault, he finished 11th though that was 0.8 seconds behind Hulkenburg.
Qualifying had begun with a bit of a shock as the fastest driver in Q1 was Fernando Alonso in his McLaren. He owed that to a decision to switch to slick tyres. His ‘dominance’ didn’t quite continue though and he failed to make it into final qualifying finishing 13th. Trouble is he’s got a 30-place grid penalty so he’ll be at the back of the grid. His team mate Stoffel Vandoorne had better luck though was in great form and qualified ninth on the grid.
“I needed to make sure I got that lap in,” he said. “I didn’t do it last weekend,” said Hamilton after qualifying. He was full of joy over the way that his Mercedes has been coping around the high-speed corners on once of the fastest tracks in the world.
The Mercedes have been dominant so far with Hamilton starting his day finishing fastest in the final practice just ahead of Vettel. He just has to get a win here on Sunday as he bids to close the 20-point gap on Sebastian Vettel, a gap that just can’t be allowed to grow much further if at all. It promises to be a great occasion with around 140,000 people cheering Hamilton and possibly a few boos for Vettel too. I’ll be back with another blog soon, till then enjoy your racing.