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F1 Hungarian GP qualifying: Ferrari locks out the front row

Hungarian GP qualifying Ferrari

The Scuderia Ferrari team stamped their authority all over today’s Hungarian grand prix qualifying session locking out the front row of the grid, leaving the Mercedes team on the second row.

It was Sebastian Vettel who took the pole position for tomorrow’s race, with a record breaking time of 1:16.276. Team mate Kimi Raikkonen slotted in ever just under two-tenths behind him with a 1:16.244.

Valtteri Bottas was the quicker of the two Mercedes drivers with a struggling Lewis Hamilton lining up in fourth place. Hamilton has been complaining all weekend about balance, vibrations, and difficulty handling the Mercedes. The W08 is most definitely not happy with the heat around the Hungaroring, especially so when Pirelli’s supersoft tyres are bolted onto the car. The Briton completed the qualifying session just over half a second off Vettel’s pace. And, with pole position being so crucial around the notoriously difficult-to-overtake Hungaroring, Hamilton will have his work cut out for him tomorrow if he intends taking back the championship lead from Vettel – even if there’s only one point currently separating the two world champs.

The Red Bulls locked out the third row of the grid with Max Verstappen beating Daniel Ricciardo to the fifth spot. The Red Bulls have been looking strong all weekend but just couldn’t put it together to take up position in the second row. Nico Hulkenberg qualified seventh fastest but will take a five place penalty thanks to a gearbox change.

Both McLaren drivers made it to Q3 and Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne will start from 8th and 9th on the grid respectively, with Carlos Sainz rounding out the top 10 in his Toro Rosso.

Jolyon Palmer was knocked out in Q2 after setting a time 0.760s slower than his team mate. He beat Force India’s Esteban Ocon to the 11th spot on the grid by just 0.080s. Daniil Kvyat will line up from 13th place with Sergio Perez and Romain Grosjean behind him.

Kevin Magnussen set an identical time to Perez but missed out on the Q2 spot because the Force India driver set his time first. Rookie Williams driver Lance Stroll was 17th fastest 0.007s off Magnussen and Perez, with Sauber’s Pascal Wehrlein’s lining up behind him in 18th.

The star of the show must have been Paul Di Resta though. The Scot made his F1 comeback following Felipe Massa being pulled out of the race weekend. He’s been feeling ill and dizzy and the call was made during the final practice session to let Di Resta take the wheel.

Despite finishing only 19th, Di Resta showed real progress throughout the qualifying session. His five flying lap times looked like this: 1m22.289s, 1m21.218s, 1m21.075s, 1m20.390s, 1m19.868s. That sort of progress can’t be attributed to anything other than proper skill real. He’ll be making his first race start since the 2013 Brazilian grand prix and Marcus Ericsson will line up behind him for tomorrow’s race.

About Adele Groenendaal

Some say she's Murray Walker's illegitimate offspring. Others say she was a right wheel-gunner for the Lotus F1 team. All we know is Adele has high octane fuel running through her veins and Formula One is her passion. Follow Adele on Twitter @aprilrain500

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