F1: Rolex Australian Grand Prix Qualifying Results for Sunday’s Race
Saturday, Lewis Hamilton drove to a record-equaling 6th Pole position at the Melbourne Grand Prix confirming the MercedesAMG team is still on its pace.
Mr. Hamilton’s 62nd career Pole position time of 1:22.188 was almost 2secs faster that his Pole position time from last year and the quickest ever lap around the Albert Park Circuit.
Mr. Hamilton was challenged by team mate Valtteri Bottas and the Ferraris of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen.
Messrs Vettel and Bottas were quicker than Mr. Hamilton in Free Practice 3 Saturday morning, with Mr. Bottas also besting him in the 2nd part of Qualifying.
In the qualifying run, Mr. Hamilton took Pole by 3/10’s of a sec from Mr. Vettel’s Ferrari.
Overall after the grid setting qualifying Ferrari very capable of challenging MercedesAMG for the chequered flag.
Mr. Vettel’s 2nd place in Qualifying means that this is the 1st time since Singapore 2015 that a Ferrari has started on the front row.
Ferrari is renowned for its superior start system that has gifted its drivers some stellar starts over the last few years, including last year in Australia.
MercedesAMG has been plagued with poor getaways from the start. This will be more important than ever for Sunday’s race as Mr. Vettel will have a great chance to out-drag Mr. Hamilton down and into Turn 1.
Home favorite Daniel Ricciardo had a miserable end to his qualifying session as he spun off towards the end of his first run in Q3, severely damaging the rear end of his Red Bull.
Rain was in the air for the whole of the Qualifying session but it’s understood that this did not play a factor in the incident. The Australian could have a lot of work to do tomorrow.
Further down the grid, Romain Grosjean in the Haas carried on his fine form from the Australian Grand Prix a year ago. He put himself 6th on the grid.
The 2 Toro Rosso drivers also made a welcome appearance in Q3 for the first time since Mexico last year as they rounded out the Top 10.
At the back, Lance Stroll collided with a wall in the 1st part of qualifying, effectively putting an end to his chances of a strong debut for Williams. After heavily crashing out Friday, Jolyon Palmer struggled with his Renault throughout Qualifying, describing it as “terrible.”
Sauber’s Pascal Wherlein pulled out of the Australian Grand Prix due to back injuries he sustained in a crash at the Race of Champions in January. Sauber reserve driver and former GP2 race winner Antonio Giovinazzi took his place for the weekend. Mr. Giovinazzi had to contend with very little running in the C36 before Qualifying but managed to take the car to 16th place on the grid, just behind team mate Marcus Ericsson.
Below are the final times for Qualifying for the Formula 1 2017 Rolex Australian Grand Prix.
Note: grid drops due to penalties sustained have not been taken into account here.
|5||33||RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER||1:24.482||1:24.092||1:23.485||18|
|10||3||RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER||1:25.383||1:23.989||DNF||10|
|11||11||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||1:25.064||1:25.081||13|
|14||31||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||1:26.009||1:25.568||16|
I previewed Ferrari’s new racecar’s technicals for the 2017 Formula One season, have a look here.
The times and channels for viewing click here
Enjoy the racing.