Spanish Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton takes 64th career pole ahead of Sebastian Vettel
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News May 13, 2017 Updated: 9:01 PM
BARCELONA, Spain -- Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton took his 6th career pole ahead of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel by 0.051s as the "Jedi Knight " prepares to do battle with the Scuderia.
"I think it’s going to be a tough race tomorrow, for sure. You see how close it is between us and it’s all milliseconds between us. It’s a long run down to… I think it’s the third longest run down to Turn One so of course, it’s going to be important to get a good start but we’ve worked hard on them so I’m going to try to do the best job I can. Valtteri’s had some great starts so I’m going to try and follow in his footsteps there and then yeah, positioning can help a lot here and be on the clean side of the grid is an advantage generally. Usually it’s a little bit of an advantage and hopefully, I’ll be able to utilize that – particularly compared to Sebastian – and then in the race, it’s just about looking after those tires. It’s a very, very long, hard race, both physically and mentally," Hamilton said.
This makes Hamilton's third Spanish Grand Prix pole as he came under pressure from Ferrari at the end of Q3. Vettel finished second just 0.2s ahead of Hamilton's teammate Valtteri Bottas in third.
Vettel's teammate Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth with a time of 1:19.373 as he and Bottas made up the second row. Red Bull's Max Verstappen finished fifth and was 0.557s from the front as teammate Daniel Ricciardo finished sixth.
McLaren-Honda driver Fernando Alonso ended the with a strong seventh place finish after having a rough start to the weekend with an engine failure. Alonso ended the day just 1.8s from the front. Force India's Sergio Perez ended the day eighth as the team are hoping to stay consistent this weekend.Felipe Massa in the Williams qualified ninth with Perez's teammate Esteban Ocon in tenth.
Kevin Magnussen, who missed the top ten, finished 11th while Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz, who felt good in the but just missed out getting into Q3.
“We knew it was going to be very tough to get into Q3, but we were close! It’s a shame, because I think we had the right balance on the car and I felt comfortable," Sainz said.
Sainz will start 12th in his home race tomorrow ahead of the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg in 13th. Magnussen's teammate Romain Grosjean qualified 14th with the Sauber of Pascal Wehrlein, who had a solid qualifying, finished 15th.
“I am pleased with Q2. After the practice sessions on Friday, we could not have expected such a result. We had some issues with the car yesterday as well as today in FP3 so I was not sure how qualifying would be. The most important was to get the maximum out of the car," Wehrlein said.
Marcus Ericsson, unfortunately, did not join his teammate Wehrlein as he missed Q2 finishing 16th. The Renault of Jolyon Palmer took 17th ahead of Williams' Lance Stroll in 18th. Alonso's McLaren teammate Stoffel Vandoorne took 19th ahead of a struggling Daniil Kvyat in 20th for Toro Rosso.