Lewis Hamilton pushes the boundaries: In qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, the Mercedes star secured his 100th pole position – and at the same time set a new record.
The Brit relegated his toughest competitor Max Verstappen to second place at the Circuit de Catalunya – but the flying Dutchman was only 0.036 seconds short of his 100th race for Red Bull. Hamilton’s team-mate Valtteri Bottas starts from third place.
Hamilton: “I can’t believe that this is my 100th Pole, but I also owe it to those who keep raising the bar at the plant.”
Verstappen: “My second attempt was a bit worse, but I’m happy that we’re so close. The way to the first curve is long (600 m; d. Ed.). In any case, we seem to have the pace. “
Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko is slightly disappointed: “To finish second with such a minimal time difference is annoying, but we are on an equal footing. We lost two tenths at turn four, but we’re starting the race positively because we know we have a fast racing car. Perez (eighth place; editor) is a tire whisperer, maybe we can bring him into play too. ”The Mexican had spun on his first lap in Q1 and was out of rhythm.
Best of the rest is Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc in front of a surprisingly fast Esteban Ocon in the Alpine, who clearly distanced his team mate Fernando Alonso (tenth place) in his home race. Daniel Ricciardo seems to have finally arrived in the McLaren. The Australian is in seventh place, two places ahead of McLaren shooting star Lando Norris.
For Aston Martin and Sebastian Vettel, nothing more is possible than the rear midfield. That also means the end in the second qualifying phase. Both drivers are at least almost at eye level: Vettel made it to 13th place with the underbody update and is a tenth of a second behind teammate Lance Stroll in eleventh place – despite a mistake in the middle sector.
“I would have liked the last shot to be better,” admits the Heppenheimer. “The last set of tires didn’t feel so good, a tenth is gone in no time. Tomorrow the cards will be shuffled nine. “
Another strong performance by Mick Schumacher: Michael Schumacher’s son beat a Williams, specifically Nicholas Latifi’s, in 18th place for the first time this season, thus ensuring that Haas is no longer clearly the worst team. In addition, the young German is again seven tenths of a second faster than his teammate Nikita Mazepin, who is holding the red lantern.
Qualifying, result GP Spain 2021:
1. Lewis Hamilton (Great Britain) – Mercedes 1: 16.741 min .;
2. Max Verstappen (Netherlands) – Red Bull +0.036 seconds;
3. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) – Mercedes +0.132;
4. Charles Leclerc (Monaco) – Ferrari +0.769;
5. Esteban Ocon (France) – Alpine +0.839;
6. Carlos Sainz Jr. (Spain) – Ferrari +0.879;
7. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) – McLaren +0.881;
8. Sergio Perez (Mexico) – Red Bull +0.960;
9. Lando Norris (UK) – McLaren +1.269;
10. Fernando Alonso (Spain) – Alpine +1.406;
11. Lance Stroll (Canada) – Aston Martin 1: 17.974;
12. Pierre Gasly (France) – Alpha Tauri 1: 17.982;
13. Sebastian Vettel (Heppenheim) – Aston Martin 1: 18.079;
14. Antonio Giovinazzi (Italy) – Alfa Romeo 1: 18.356;
15. George Russell (UK) – Williams 1: 19,154;
16. Yuki Tsunoda (Japan) – Alpha Tauri 1: 18.556;
17. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) – Alfa Romeo 1: 18.917;
18. Mick Schumacher (Gland / Switzerland) – Haas 1: 19,117;
19. Nicholas Latifi (Canada) – Williams 1: 19.219;
20. Nikita Masepin (Russia) – Haas 1: 19.807