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Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone Pérez Out in Q1

Russell Takes Pole, Mercedes Dominates at Silverstone!

06/07/2024

Russell clinches pole at Silverstone, leading a Mercedes 1-2, as Norris and Verstappen prepare on the second row, with Pérez facing another Q1 exit.

Following a weekend marked by rain and a rapidly changing track, it is challenging to clearly define the hierarchy at this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone. Two teams emerged at the forefront during the free practice sessions.

McLaren F1 dominated the first day, with Lando Norris posting the best time in both sessions, even securing a one-two finish in the second. Mercedes also achieved a one-two during the third free practice, with George Russell leading Lewis Hamilton.

Max Verstappen did not make it into the top three during any of the free practice sessions, but one cannot discount the three-time world champion from the battle for pole position.

Ferrari appears unable to compete with these five drivers, as does Sergio Pérez, who still lagged significantly in the second Red Bull. Behind them, the race to reach Q3 is expected to be fiercely contested, although Nico Hülkenberg currently seems to be the “best of the rest” behind the top four teams.

It is noted that Pierre Gasly will start from the back of the grid after changing numerous parts on his Alpine. The Frenchman has theoretically incurred a 50-place grid penalty, thus he will be 20th on the grid, regardless.

Daniel Ricciardo received merely a reprimand for zigzagging in the pit lane during the third free practice while the asphalt was wet. The FIA did not deem this to be a sufficient hazard to merit a penalty.

A downpour occurred during the Formula 2 race, but the track is drying, and it seems we are heading towards a qualification session without rain or risk of further showers.

Q1 – 18 minutes

The drivers went out on intermediate tyres for the first attempt, with Esteban Ocon setting the fastest time at 1’39.078, before being beaten by Lewis Hamilton with a 1’37.759. George Russell placed second, 0.041 seconds behind his teammate, before Verstappen went faster with a 1’37.518.

Charles Leclerc placed fourth, and Alex Albon fifth. Lando Norris set the second-fastest time, while Leclerc missed a corner. Oscar Piastri was seventh behind Albon and ahead of Sergio Pérez, whose time was eight-tenths slower than his teammate’s. Carlos Sainz only managed the ninth-fastest time.

Hamilton took the fastest time with a 1’37.134, and Russell was second, 0.081 seconds behind the seven-time world champion. The track was drying, making Fernando Alonso’s time of 1.2 seconds slower than Hamilton’s disappointing. Lance Stroll did slightly better, setting the seventh-fastest time.

Piastri recorded the third-fastest time on intermediate tyres, but several drivers attempted to switch to soft tyres before the session was interrupted due to Pérez. The Red Bull driver spun, complicating his situation as his position is officially under threat.

During the red flag period, Pérez requested to be pushed back onto the track’s asphalt, a request that the marshals did not fulfil. He exited his car while holding a provisional tenth place. However, on a drying track, this ensured a back-of-the-grid start for Pérez.

The session resumed at 16:19, and with rain approaching the circuit, the drivers quickly re-emerged. The wind picked up, and clouds returned over the circuit. Norris’ engineer informed him that there might only be five minutes before the rain returned.

Stroll is under investigation for leaving the pits while the light at the end of the pit lane was still red. Drivers complained of raindrops at Turn 7 as soon as they exited, indicating it would likely be a one-lap attempt for the drivers.

Times quickly fell after the brief interruption, during which the sun shone over the circuit. Bottas smashed Hamilton’s time with a 1’32.431, 4.7 seconds ahead. Guanyu Zhou was six-tenths behind, and Kevin Magnussen slotted in between them.

Nico Hülkenberg went faster with a 1’31.929, and Alonso could not beat him, trailing by four-tenths. Piastri improved to 1’30.895, while Norris only managed a 1’31.5. Verstappen made a mistake on his flying lap as rain began to fall. Hamilton moved up to fourth, Ocon to ninth, and Sainz received a message from his teammate emphasising the importance of nailing this lap.

Ricciardo improved, as did Leclerc, who only set the tenth-fastest time. Magnussen also made an error, and Russell climbed to seventh. Sainz had his lap time deleted and dropped to 17th place.

Sainz managed to climb back to second, with Verstappen fourth, while Leclerc placed ninth. Stroll moved up to second, Albon then took second, and Tsunoda 15th. Sargeant climbed to sixth, Alonso advanced to third, and Hamilton took the lead with a 1’29.547.

Russell moved up to second. Ricciardo improved, as did Sainz and Leclerc, along with Zhou and Tsunoda, who set the sixth-fastest time. Ocon complained about being sent out when the track was at its wettest, coinciding with Verstappen going off track.

The eliminated drivers were Bottas, Magnussen, Ocon, Pérez, and Gasly, who is penalised and will start last.

Q2 – 15 minutes

Albon set the first benchmark with a 1’27.983, while Sargeant only managed a 1’29.4. Zhou slotted in over a second behind Albon, and Stroll did not fare better. Conversely, Alonso set the fastest time with a 1’27.652.

Hülkenberg placed second, 0.066 seconds behind Alonso, and Tsunoda took the provisional fifth. Piastri went top with a 1’27.631, Leclerc placed sixth, and Verstappen fifth. Albon improved his time, and Sainz took the lead with a 1’27.540.

Norris bettered it with a 1’27.432, Russell could only manage the 15th time, and Hamilton was not on a fast lap in this first run. Tsunoda reclaimed tenth place with difficulty. Leclerc complained about not feeling comfortable with the tyres used in this run.

Hamilton eventually set the third-fastest time, and Russell followed up with a lap to place ninth. Albon improved to fourth. Sargeant moved up to ninth, while Stroll climbed to fifth. Alonso also improved and took the top spot with a 1’27.279. Leclerc set the eighth-fastest time.

Verstappen climbed to second, Sainz took the lead with a 1’27.149, while Piastri embarked on another flying lap. The McLaren driver set a blistering time of 1’26.945.

Hülkenberg further improved his performance, setting a pace of 1’26.847 to top the standings, confirming the strong form of the upgraded Haas. Russell enhanced his time to 1’26.766, while Zhou was positioned 13th. Hamilton narrowly missed out, just four-thousandths behind his teammate, and Norris decisively claimed the top spot with a 1’26.559. Sargeant secured the seventh fastest time!

Piastri moved up to second, just behind Norris, and Leclerc logged the seventh fastest time. Sainz bettered his performance to fifth. Alonso climbed to second place, and Verstappen managed sixth despite damage to his car. Russell took the second fastest time, while Stroll moved up to tenth, thus eliminating Leclerc! Ricciardo did not improve.

Eliminated were Leclerc, Sargeant, Tsunoda, Zhou, and Ricciardo.

Q3 – 12 minutes

Verstappen posted the fastest lap with a 1’26.350, but Piastri improved on that with a 1’26.237. Norris then claimed the provisional pole with a 1’26.030. Sainz took fourth, ahead of Alonso and Albon, with Stroll positioning fifth in front of Alonso.

Hülkenberg secured the fourth fastest time, while Hamilton slotted into second place. Russell finished with the session’s best time of 1’26.024, placing three British drivers in the top three positions after this first run!

Drivers ventured out late again, with some narrowly making it across the line before the timer expired, particularly the last ones, Sainz and Alonso.

In the first sector, drivers were off pace on their initial attempts. Hülkenberg overtook Verstappen for fifth place, with Verstappen reclaiming fourth. Hamilton completed his run, moving to the front with a 1’25.990!

Russell bettered that with a 1’25.819, while the McLarens failed to improve! Russell secured pole position ahead of Hamilton, as Mercedes shone at their home race with the upgraded package on the W15! Norris finished third, completing a British top three, ahead of Verstappen, Piastri, Hülkenberg, Sainz, Stroll, Albon, and Alonso, who was again outpaced by his teammate.

Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone Pérez Out in Q1
Pos.DriverTeamQ1Q2Q3
01George RussellMercedes W151:30.1061:26.7231:25.819
02Lewis HamiltonMercedes W151:29.5471:26.7701:25.990
03Lando NorrisMcLaren Mercedes MCL381:31.5961:26.5591:26.030
04Max VerstappenRed Bull Honda RBPT RB201:31.3421:26.7961:26.203
05Oscar PiastriMcLaren Mercedes MCL381:30.8951:26.7331:26.237
06Nico HülkenbergHaas Ferrari VF-241:31.9291:26.8471:26.338
07Carlos SainzFerrari SF-241:30.5571:26.8431:26.509
08Lance StrollAston Martin Mercedes AMR241:31.4101:26.9381:26.585
09Alex AlbonWilliams Mercedes FW461:31.1351:26.9331:26.640
10Fernando AlonsoAston Martin Mercedes AMR241:31.2641:26.7301:26.917
—————-————————-———-———-
11Charles LeclercFerrari SF-241:30.4961:27.097
12Logan SargeantWilliams Mercedes FW461:31.6081:27.175
13Yuki TsunodaRB Honda RBPT VCARB 011:30.9941:27.269
14Guanyu ZhouStake F1 Kick Sauber C441:31.1901:27.867
15Daniel RicciardoRB Honda RBPT VCARB 011:31.2911:27.949
—————-————————-———-———-
16Valtteri BottasStake F1 Kick Sauber C441:32.431
17Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari VF-241:32.905
18Esteban OconAlpine Renault A5241:34.557
19Sergio PérezRed Bull Honda RBPT RB201:38.348
20Pierre GaslyAlpine Renault A5241:39.804
Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone Pérez Out in Q1

Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone; Pérez Out in Q1! Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone; Pérez Out in Q1!. f1 2024 Mercedes Front Row at Silverstone; Pérez Out in Q1!

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