Valtteri Bottas halted Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton’s run of Formula 1 poles by beating him to the top spot for the Eifel Grand Prix at the Nurburgring.
(F1 EIFEL GP QUALIFYING) – Max Verstappen and Hamilton had shared the fastest times through Q1 and Q2, with the Red Bull then fastest on the first Q3 runs. At that point just 0.081s blanketed Verstappen, Bottas and Hamilton.
But Bottas’s excellent final lap of 1m25.269s put him nearly three tenths of a second clear of his rivals, as Verstappen fell to third behind both Mercedes.
QUALIFICATION – EIFEL
|1||Valtteri BOTTAS||Mercedes||1: 25.269|
|2||Lewis HAMILTON||Mercedes||1: 25.525|
|3||Max VERSTAPPEN||Red Bull||1: 25.562|
|4||Charles LECLERC||Ferrari||1: 26,035|
|5||Alexander ALBON||Red Bull||1: 26,047|
|6||Daniel RICCIARDO||Renault||1: 26.223|
|7||Esteban OCON||Renault||1: 26.242|
|8||Lando NORRIS||McLaren||1: 26.458|
|9||Sergio PÉREZ||Racing Point||1: 26,704|
|10||Carlos SAINZ||McLaren||1: 26,709|
|11||Sebastian VETTEL||Ferrari||1: 26.738|
|12||Pierre GASLY||Alpha Tauri||1: 26.776|
|13||Daniil KVYAT||Alpha Tauri||1: 26,848|
|14||Antonio GIOVINAZZI||Alfa Romeo||1: 26.936|
|15||Kevin MAGNUSSEN||Haas||1: 27.125|
|16||Romain GROSJEAN||Haas||1: 27.552|
|17||George RUSSELL||Williams||1: 27.564|
|18||Nicholas LATIFI||Williams||1: 27,812|
|19||Kimi RÄIKKÖNEN||Alfa Romeo||1: 27,817|
|20||Nico HULKENBERG||Racing Point||1: 28,021|
F1 EIFEL GP QUALIFYING F1 EIFEL GP QUALIFYING
The big story of the morning had been Nico Hulkenberg’s last-minute call-up to replace the unwell Lance Stroll at Racing Point.
Going straight into qualifying having not been in the car since he stood in for Sergio Perez at Silverstone two months ago, Hulkenberg was slowest in Q1.
His best laps were hampered by small errors and lock-ups, and he lapped nine tenths of a second slower than Perez. Not getting beyond Q1 means he heads into the race with 10 laps of running in the car at this track under his belt.
Perez went on to qualify ninth.
Charles Leclerc built on Ferrari’s practice promise to put himself fourth on the grid, although team-mate Sebastian Vettel failed to join him in the pole shootout.
Both Ferraris needed big runs on their final Q2 laps. Vettel – winner of F1’s last Nurburgring race seven years ago – made it up to 10th, only for Leclerc’s leap to fifth to push him back down to 11th moments later.
Vettel, who was half a second slower than his team-mate, has not been in Q3 since the British GP at the start of August.
Leclerc split the Red Bulls in Q3, with Alex Albon nearly half a second slower than Verstappen in fifth.
Daniel Ricciardo edged out Renault team-mate Esteban Ocon for sixth by 0.019s, having been only ninth after the first Q3 runs, while the McLarens of Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz Jr sandwiched Perez in eighth and 10th.
On the weekend when Alfa Romeo had planned to run his potential 2021 replacement Mick Schumacher in Friday practice, Antonio Giovinazzi managed to break out of Q1 for the first time this season. He went on to qualify as top Ferrari customer in 14th ahead of Haas duo Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean.
Giovinazzi’s team-mate Kimi Raikkonen will make his record-breaking 323rd F1 start from the back row alongside Hulkenberg, behind the Williams of George Russell and Nicholas Latifi.
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F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|10h00 - 11h30||Free practice 1|
|14h00 - 14:18||1st Qualifying|
|14h25 - 14h40||2nd Qualifying|
|14h48 - 15h00||3rd Qualifying|
|13:10 - 15:10||Race|