F1: Hamilton Leads Mercedes Qualifying Masterclass In Silverstone

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Lewis Hamilton & Valterri Bottas celebrating their teams record breaking 8th consecutive pole position at Silverstone. Image sourced from @MercedesAMGF1 via Twitter.

Hamilton Leads Mercedes 1-2 In British GP Qualifying.

Record Breaking Lap

Lewis Hamilton scorched the field as he claimed his 91st career pole position in Silverstone.

With his sensational lap around the old airfield giving the German manufacturer yet another record.

With Hamilton edging out team-mate Valtteri Bottas by three tenths of a second.

Early in Q2 Mercedes’ opted for the medium tyre in a bid to open up strategy for Sunday’s race.

A Rare Mistake

Although, Hamilton spun as he exited Ludfield corner, dragging gravel onto the track which forced the stewards to ‘Red Flag’ the session.

Hamilton: “Valtteri was pushing me right to the end. It was a real struggle out there.”

“We had that spin. I was struggling through the first section. I managed to compose myself. The first Q3 lap was clean and the second was even better.”

Valtteri Bottas entering Silverstone ahead of qualifying on Saturday. Image sourced from @MercedesAMGF1 via Twitter.

Bottas: “It was a pretty good qualifying until Q3, when I started to drift a bit with the rear end.”

“Lewis found a bit more than me and he deserved the pole. He managed to win from P2 last year, so hopefully I will get opportunities tomorrow.”

A Tale Of Two Bulls

Following the Mercedes’ duo was Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

The Dutchman ended qualifying in third position.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was Mercedes’ closest challenger despite being over a second off pole position. Image sourced from @RedBullRacing via Twitter.

Verstappen: “Mercedes was just way too fast. You try to do the best you can and that’s P3. You have a fighting chance (in the race) starting third.”

On the contrary, team-mate Alex Albon struggled with his RB16 throughout qualifying.

The Thai driver who failed to progress to Q3 for the first time in 2020 will start twelfth on race day.

Maranello Miracle

Ferrari Chairman John Elkann stated earlier this week that the Scuderia might not get back to winning form until 2022.

Charles Leclerc took matters into his own hands with a phenomenal qualifying in his scarlett red SF1000.

The Monégasque who was just one tenth off Verstappen’s Red Bull will start in fourth for the Maranello based outfit.

Leclerc was however under investigation for an unsafe release during qualifying but no further action was taken by the FIA.

Lando Norris, who sported a striking new helmet design this weekend pulled out a stunning final lap to secure fifth on tomorrow’s grid.

The young McLaren driver impressing once more, recovering from a shaky start to qualifying to head the tight mid-field pack.

The Hulk Is Back

Racing Point’s Lance Stroll brought his RP20 across the line in sixth.

As new team-mate Nico Hulkenberg, who is replacing an ill Sergio Perez, qualified thirteenth in his first qualifying of 2020.

Image sourced from @RacingPointF1 via Twitter.

The German driver who only got the call up on Thursday night, was just 3 tenths off Stroll.

Carlos Sainz Jr. in the other McLaren was seventh, marginally ahead of the Renault’s of Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon.

Both of whom will line up in eight & ninth respectively.

Sebastian Vettel originally ended his session in ninth place.

However the 4-time world champion had his lap time deleted for exceeding track limits. Subsequently dropping him down to tenth.

Scuderia Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel exceeded track limits at Copse, leading to a lap deletion. Image sourced from @ScuderiaFerrari via Twitter.

Vettel: “I struggled to find the rhythm. The car was not too bad but it didn’t fit me today so.”

“We struggled yesterday with very little laps and this morning to get into the rhythm. Nevertheless, I will try everything I can tomorrow and we will see.”

At the end Q2, Frenchman Pierre Gasly set the exact same lap time as Lance Stroll.

Although as the latter set their time first, Gasly was classified eleventh meaning both AlphaTauri’s were knocked out as Stroll advanced.

Russell In Trouble

Williams’ George Russell made Q2 for  the second consecutive weekend.

However, unfortunately for Russell he will drop five places after failing to slow for yellow flags in Q1.

Which were ironically shown following a spin from team-mate Nicholas Latifi.

The Canadian was unable to improve after the incident and will round out the grid in twentieth.

Joining Latifi at the rear of the grid will be both Alfa Romeos and Haas’ cars.

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