Lewis Hamilton will start from the illustrious pole position grid slot in tomorrows Monaco Grand Prix. The Mercedes driver put together a lap time that was good enough to beat his teammate Nico Rosberg by three tenths of a second, and Sebastien Vettel by a further seven tenths of a second.
The session started off under some rather cloudy skies, with there being a 20 per-cent chance of rain set to interrupt the running according to the weather radar. Never the less the cars took to the track, with Nico Hulkenberg giving us a brief scare in the Force India at Mirabeau as his car tapped the barrier on exit of the corner in similar fashion to his teammates crash at that corner in last years race.
Whilst most of the top teams were able to make it through without reacting too much, the shock drop out ended up being Valterri Bottas in the Williams. The team didn’t seem to time their runs right, with Massa just getting into the second part whilst his teammate hit traffic along with both of the Sauber’s. They all joined the two Manor cars on the sidelines, as the second part of Qualifying began.
But almost as quickly as the session started, it ended for Fernando Alonso after he stopped his car down at St Devote with what looked like another mechanical issue with his McLaren Honda. Meanwhile his teammate Jenson Button looked like he might be able to get into the top ten with his run, however another yellow flag down at St Devote caused by Nico Rosberg locking up monumentally spoiled his lap.
“That’s painful” he exclaimed over the team radio, as he joined Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Massa, and his teammate in ending his Qualifying session early on. Meanwhile Hamilton and Vettel both set exactly the same time that session, prompting speculation that the Ferrari driver might just be able to split the two Merc’s like he has done before.
Just a couple of minutes before the start of the top ten shootout and spots of rain started to appear, causing a queue of cars to line up at pit exit to get a banker lap in incase it materialised later on. As it turned out we didn’t get a deluge, but we did get some impressive laps early on from Hamilton and Rosberg.
On their final runs Hamilton managed to put together a lap that was three tenths faster than his previous one, but disaster for Rosberg as he locked up in similar fashion to his previous one during the final parts of Q2. Whilst he made the corner, the lap was already done, bringing the fight for pole to an end in a rather anti-climax fashion.
Vettel could only manage third ahead of Riccardo, Kvyat, and Raikkonen a disappointing sixth after complaining about tyre temperatures. Perez got an impressive seventh ahead of Sainz, Maldonado, and Vestappen who went third fastest in Q1.