F1: Hamilton and Vettel on the Front Row at Brazil
- Ferrari have a tactical advantage by starting on the harder tires, if the day is dry.
Lewis Hamilton on the Pole with hopes of wrapping up the constructors’ championship Sunday ahead of Ferrari’s (NYSE:RACE) Sebastian Vettel for the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Despite this, the front 2 front runners might find themselves in trouble with the stewards for separate incidents during qualifying.
Mr. Hamilton was almost involved in a collision with Williams’ Sergey Sirotkin, whilst Mr. Vettel may be guilty of breaching protocol at the FIA weighbridge. This issue is still open at this writing.
If the incident is deemed not worthy of a penalty, Mr. Hamilton will start his 10th race this season from Pole position.
He was cleared, and will start on the Pole.
The 2 incidents may promote Valtteri Bottas to Pole position, but for now the MercedesAMG driver lines up in 3rd ahead of Kimi Raikkonen.
Regardless, Ferrari have a tactical advantage by starting on the harder tires, if the day is dry.
The Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo lineup 5th and 6th, whilst Marcus Ericsson led Charles Leclerc in an all-Sauber 4th row.
With the chances of rain during the session being declared at 60%, teams and drivers were keen to complete laps early and avoid being caught out by a sudden downpour.
The rain came in Q-1, but was not enough to hamper drivers’ qualifying efforts or cause any errors.
The rain did have an affect in Q-2, but slick tires were still required in 1-H of the session. The usual teams at the front progressed, but Ferrari took the risk of posting their only flying laps on the soft tire, a much better option to start the race on if it remains dry. Red Bull Racing and MercedesAMG will start the race on the supersofts.
The Top 2 in the championship found themselves at risk of grid penalties as a result of their actions in Q-2.
Mr. Hamilton was unable to get out of Sergey Sirotkin’s way when the Williams driver was approaching the final corner at full speed and the pair nearly collided.
The incident for Mr. Vettel was usual.
He was called onto the weighbridge but, according to the FIA, he did not switch off his engine which is required for an accurate reading, breaking the scales when he drove off. Mr. Vettel was summoned to the stewards after qualifying.
Despite the threat of penalties hanging over them, Messrs Hamilton and Vettel locked out the front row, Mr. Hamilton taking Pole position by less than 1/10th sec.
BRAZILIAN GRAND PRIX, Qualifying
1 Lewis Hamilton MercedesAMG 1m07.281s
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m07.374s
3 Valtteri Bottas MercedesAMG 1m07.441s
4 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m07.456s
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault 1m07.778s
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m07.780s
7 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m08.296s
8 Charles Leclerc Sauber/Ferrari 1m08.492s
9 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1m08.517s
10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 1m09.029s
11 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 1m08.659s
12 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m08.741s
13 Esteban Ocon Force India/Mercedes 1m08.770s
14 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m08.834s
15 Sergey Sirotkin Williams/Mercedes 1m10.381s
16 Carlos Sainz Renault 1m09.269s
17 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Honda 1m09.280s
18 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Renault 1m09.402s
19 Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 1m09.441s
20 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Renault 1m09.601s
We could be in for a cloudy day Sunday with the possibility of thunderstorms as per Accuweather.com.
Date: Sunday, 12 November
Start Time: 4 p.m. GMT/11:00a ET
TV Info: Sky Sports F1, NBCSN
Tune in and enjoy the racing.