Lewis Hamilton braves the elements to takes he 77th career pole in Hungary
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News July 28, 2018 Updated: 10:12 AM PT
BUDAPEST, Hungary -- Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton showed why he is one of the best in the game when comes to wet conditions taking his 77th career pole ahead of Sunday’s Hungarian Grand Prix.
Traversing the wet corners of the Hungaroring, Hamilton focused on finding the optimum line during his fast lap but suffered a small slide on the exit of Turn 4.
“It’s a great feeling to lock out the front row, particularly with the tough weekend we’ve been having. In the dry, I thought I would be lucky to get third, fourth or maybe even fifth, as Ferrari have been quicker than us and Red Bull were fast too. But then the heavens opened and I knew we were in the game. The rain levelled the playing field and gave us that opportunity to make the difference,” said Hamilton.
Upon taking his fifth pole of the season, Hamilton also takes his sixth Hungarian Grand Prix pole with Michael Schumacher being the only other driver to hold the most poles in Hungary at seven.
Valtteri Bottas finished 0.260s behind his teammate in second making it a package deal with the Mercedes front row lockup for the fourth time this season.
Kimi Raikkonen finished third after previously holding provisional pole before getting knocked down by Hamilton and fellow Finn Bottas.
Raikkonen’s Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel, who appeared to struggle in the wet conditions as he did in Germany last week, finished 0.552s behind Hamilton in fourth.
Renault ’s Carlos Sainz took his best qualifying result of the season in fifth ahead of Pierre Gasly, who also pulled an impressive result for Toro Rosso in sixth.
As the weather played into the favor of Mercedes, the same could not be said for Red Bull who only managed to get one of their cars into the top ten with Max Verstappen qualifying outside the top six in seventh. Daniel Ricciardo finished 12th after managing to move into Q2 but struggling to make it into the third qualifying session.
Brendon Harley took eighth giving him his best qualifying result of his career since joining Toro Rosso. Haas drivers Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean rounded out the top ten in ninth and tenth.
Fernando Alonso finished 11th for McLaren followed by the 12th place Riccardo. Nico Hulkenberg finished 13th in the second Renault followed by Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson in 14th.
Williams’ Lance Stroll will start 15th after suffering a spin on the exit of Turn 9 that sent his car sliding across the grass and tapping the barrier damaging his front wing.
Stoffel Vandoorne, who continues to struggle in his third season in F1, will start 16th after being knocked out of Q1 for the fifth race in a row and being out-qualified by teammate Fernando Alonso for the 17th time this season.
Charles Leclerc, who has had a run of successful Q3 appearances, was able to get his C37 out of Q1 and will start 17th ahead of the Force Indias of Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez in 18th and 19th. Sergey Sirotkin finished out the final spot on the grid in 20th.