Lewis Hamilton couldn’t beat the marker set down by team-mate Valtteri Bottas as the Finn took his first ever pole position in Formula One at the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Photo : AFP/Getty images
In their final shot at qualifying in Q3, Valtteri Bottas went first and set a fast lap of 1:28:769. Hamilton, however, couldn’t hit back as he dropped time in the second sector and could only manage P2.
Worryingly, Ferrari pace seemed to have taken a walk in the desert as Vettel qualified P3 – half a second behind Bottas! Another poor showing by Kimi meant that he slots in P5, actually out-qualified by the Red Bull of Danny Ric in P4, with Max Verstappen qualifying in P6.
Felipe Massa did another decent job as he put his Williams P8, with his team-mate Strolling in P12.
Q1 saw 5 drivers from 5 different teams eliminated, with the shock exit being Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz who lost power on his fast lap despite having the quickest first sector of all.
Stoffel Vandoorne, Marcus Ericsson, and Kevin Magnussen dropped out in Q1, surprisingly accompanied by the Force India of Sergio Perez.
Fernando Alonso dragged his McLaren into Q2 but another engine problem meant that he didn’t set a Q2 time. Romain Grosjean impressed again as he put his Haas in Q3, eventually qualifying in a respectable P9. Daniil Kyvat almost scraped through to Q3, but he ran wide at the final corner and that brought an end to his evening.
Pascal Wehrlein silenced his critics as he qualified a stunning P13 on his return to F1 following his fitness related absence.
Having been dead last at the end of FP3, Renault’s Jolyon Palmer pulled a rabbit out this performance hat and put himself into Q2 for the first time this season. Incredibly, he then went on commit more madness as he scraped through to Q3! With his incredibly quick team-mate Nico Hulkenberg putting in a stonker of a lap as well, both Renaults made it into Q3, with Nico starting P7 and Jolyon P10.
Photo : Formula 1
So there you have it – Valtteri’s first pole in F1, beating Lewis Hamilton in a straight fight. This will serve as a massive boost to his confidence after having spun twice under safety car. I’ve predicted Vettel to take the race win, but screw that – I want Valtteri Bottas to win the Bahrain GP!
Feature image : motorsport.com
– Aditya Bhat.