Turkish Grand Prix | Hamilton mitigates grid penalty with strong qualifying run


Two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso, McLaren’s Lando Norris and Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez will start ahead of Hamilton.

Lewis Hamilton mitigated the damage from his 10th-place penalty at the Turkish Grand Prix, setting the fastest qualifying time on October 9th. This should have given the world champion his 102nd place in Formula 1, but it didn’t count. in the accounting logs.

Instead, Hamilton kicks off on October 11th, 10th as a penalty for swapping the combustion engine for his Mercedes, with teammate Valtteri Bottas taking over the pole. Max Verstappen, trapped in one of the most intense championship bouts Hamilton has faced, starts second with Bottas.

Hamilton knew he would lose 10 grid places, which made qualifying critically important. The penalty puts Verstappen in a strong position to close the two-point gap from Hamilton in the standings as the championship ends. The Turkish Grand Prix is ​​the first of seven remaining races on the schedule.

After the qualifying session, Hamilton, Bottas and Verstappen thought that Formula 1 should revise its rules and the pole should still be counted. The rule is intended to address reliability issues, and Mercedes has allocated three internal combustion engines to Hamilton this season.

“That was my best pole,” Hamilton joked. “I got pole, I don’t think a penalty will necessarily affect that.”

Bottas agreed.

“Lewis had the fastest single lap. Technically, he was on the street, but then he was dropped, and I don’t think that’s really fair, ”added Bottas.

Even Verstappen sided with the seven-time champion, with whom he sparred on the track all season.

“The guy who makes the fastest lap has to earn pole position,” Verstappen said.

Hamilton finished ahead of Bottas by 0.13 seconds and Verstappen by 0.33 seconds. Charles Leclerc of Ferrari moved up to third from a Hamilton penalty, while Pierre Gasly of AlphaTauri moved up to fourth.

Meanwhile, Verstappen will try to overtake Bottas at the start and then overtake Hamilton in the championship race. Leading the 5.3-kilometer Istanbul Park circuit, the Dutchman leads Hamilton with seven wins this season, but Hamilton, with just four wins, leads the standings by two points.

“I’m hoping for a clean run, but starting from the inside won’t be easy,” Verstappen said. – In dry and wet conditions, very low grip compared to the outside. We will try our best to keep Mercedes behind. but it won’t be easy, they had a great pace all weekend. ”

Hamilton is aiming for a record 101 win, but has a long way to go with quality movement. Two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso, McLaren’s Lando Norris and Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez will start ahead of Hamilton.

“I will give everything. Overtaking is not an easy task at the moment and we are all on the same tire, ”Hamilton said. “We have a long, straight back, so let’s see what we can do. I hope we can give the fans a good race here. “

Bottas is pursuing his first win of the season, and this time around, he could do it with Hamilton, perhaps too far to challenge.

“I’m on the street, so everything should be fine,” said the Finnish driver. “Max is starting next to me, and Ferrari looked good this weekend, so it will be a tough race, but we will do our best. We have a good race car, I just need to focus on my race, avoid mistakes and stay ahead. “

Mercedes director Toto Wolff found positives at the end of qualifying and believed that Hamilton would be able to deal with traffic jams.

“Lewis can only try his best, and I would not want to have another driver in the car when it comes to overtaking and passing the field,” said Wolf. “The big plus is that the car is very fast and Valtteri starts from pole. On the negative side, it would have been a front row lockout weekend for the team otherwise.

“Progress will be difficult for Lewis when all the cars are ahead of him … but Lewis makes phenomenal recovery trips over and over again and there is no one else in the car.”

Alonso was sixth for Alpine, Perez seventh for Red Bull, followed by Norris. Lance Stroll was ninth for Aston Martin and Yuki Tsunoda was tenth for AlphaTauri. Sebastian Vettel was 11th for Aston Martin, Esteban Ocon 12th for Alpine and George Russell 13th for Williams.

Mick Schumacher made it to qualifying group 2 and finished 14th with the Haas team.

Carlos Sainz was 15th in the Ferrari team, but didn’t put much effort into qualifying because he had already been pushed into the background by taking over a completely new powertrain.

“It was a shame we weren’t trying to set the fastest time,” Sines said. “It’s hard to do, but looking at the big picture, it’s better to take the penalty now and have the best engine for the rest of the season. The pace was encouraging all weekend, so we are ready to make our way up the track. order as much as possible. Bring this. “

Sainz’s penalty moved Daniel Riccardo to 15th place for the McLaren team.

Nicholas Latifi was 17th for Williams. Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Raikkonen finished 18th and 19th in Alfa Romeo, and Nikita Mazepin in 20th in Haas.


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