Nobody seemed able to cause any trouble to the Brit today, as he sported a shape to match that of a world champion. Rosberg goes into the usual routine and finishes second, while Bottas rounds up the podium.
Of all the 11 races of the season, only one saw Hamilton coming down the first position on the starting grid and things did not seem any different in Spa, despite the endeavor driven by Rosberg. The German was faster in the Q2, but in the final phase of the qualifying session, he disappointingly gave in, going half of a second behind Hamilton. After the ten pole positions, Hamilton is already the winner of the FIA Pole Trophy and runs as a favorite in tomorrow’s race.
As surprising as it may seem, the third place was not knocked down by a Ferrari car, but by Bottas’ Williams. He finished over a second behind Hamilton, but inside the very same tenth of a second as Grojean and Perez, the holders of the 4th and 5th positions. Ricciardo came next, as he turned out to be the best positioned driver propelled by Renault. Felipe Massa is not capable of matching his teammate’s performance and comes in the 7th spot, ahead of Maldonado.
Vettel ends up in the 9th position, at the end of a nightmarish day for Ferrari. The German did not have sufficient resource for a better time, while Raikkonen could not run any faster himself in the Q2 and must settle for the 14th place. The engine of his racing car closed down due to lack of oil pressure and the Finn was bound to quit.
The top ten is rounded by Carlos Sainz, over two seconds and a half behind the leader, while he was followed by Hulkenberg. Unexpectedly, Kvyat did not make it to the Q2 and came 12th, ahead of Marcus Ericsson.
The victims of the first qualifying session were Felipe Nasr, the teammates from McLaren-Honda and Marussia, but Max Verstappen as well. The Dutch partially lost his engine right before a fast lap and was bound to start from the 18th spot tomorrow.
The race starts tomorrow at 2 p.m. CET.
|5||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m48.599s||1.402s|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m48.639s||1.442s|
|10||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m49.771s||2.574s|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m49.121s||-|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m49.228s||-|
|18||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||-||-|