Car 44 took his 44th career pole position in Canada today after what was an interesting Qualifying session this afternoon. Hamilton was three tenths of a second ahead of teammate Nico Rosberg on the timesheet, and a further six tenths ahead of Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen.
Unlike the deluge we had yesterday in Practice, Qualifying hour got underway in blue skies in Montreal. But whilst the weather looked good, it didn’t look great for Jenson Button who after stopping in Practice Three with an MGU-H problem was unable to take part in the session and will start from the back of the grid tomorrow with a 10 second time penalty due to using up his fifth MGU-H component.
Also having issues with his MGH-K was Sebastien Vettel during the first half of Q1. The Ferrari driver set a lap time, but it was not good enough to get him out of the drop zone. Felipe Massa also had problems with his power output, which meant he was unable to set a quick enough lap time to get though and thus meant the three aforementioned drivers along with Merhi and Stevens all dropped out in Q1.
Meanwhile Romain Grosjean went top after setting the quickest speed in the speed trap on the back straight, whilst Rosberg and Hamilton were separated by two thousandths of a second at the end of the session.
In Q2 Hamilton and Rosberg were again split by a small margin after their first runs, whilst Sainz, Vestappen, Ericsson, and Alonso were all unable to improve on their initial lap times to get into the top ten shootout.
Once that began we saw Hamilton go quickest in the first part of Q3 from Rosberg by three tenths of a second, after the latter complained about oversteer on his first run. Meanwhile we saw a race off of pit lane between Grosjean and Maldonado, as the pair were released side-by-side on their final runs. Both managed fifth and sixth respectively.
Meanwhile the chase between the two Merc’s was getting heated, as Rosberg managed to get within a tenth of a second of Hamilton in the second sector. But after an average first sector, Rosberg would have to best his teammates final run to the line if he wanted to take away pole. As it happened however Hamilton managed to go quicker, and with it take pole position for tomorrows race.
Bottas was fourth ahead of Hulkenberg who took a surprise seventh place. That put him ahead of both Red Bull’s, with Kvyat out-qualifying Riccardo – who looked pretty glum in the post-session interviews. Perez meanwhile starts from tenth position.