European Grand Prix – Qualifying

The teams no longer have the chance to change engine mapping software settings between Qualifying and the Race, which many think will hit Red Bull the hardest but only time will tell.

Qualifying session 1 (Q1)
Smoke from PD’s Force India on his warm up lap; only lasts a few turns – hopefully that’s the result of an overfill and not another problem for him
NH 1:41.897
(PD P2)
(MS P2)
(PD P2)
MW 1:40.429
(FM P2)
SV 1:39.965
FA fights the Ferrari through the final turn
(FA P2)
JB 1:39.605
Pit-car radio from RB saying the tyres aren’t working as well as they did in the (cooler) morning practice session
SV 1:39.356
10mins gone = 10mins left of Q1; still no lap time from SP, SB or JA
(JB P2)
LH 1:39.244
BBC report Williams have gone back to the previous version of their exhaust system
SV 1:39.116
5mins left; bottom 7 are TG, VL, PD, NK, PM, SB, JA
The tail-enders are using the soft compound tyres, so some of the midfield runners will need to do that too in order to avoid being relegated to the back of the grid
2mins left; bottom 7 are HK, KK, JT, TG, VL, PD, NK
(MS P2)
20 cars on track
FM is on soft tyres, trying to get the Ferrari up from P17
Chequered flag
FM 1:38.413 but it cost him a set of softs
JT was pushing hard but spun in the final turn
So the back of the grid will be JA, HK, JT, TG, VL, JD, NK and they’re all within the 107% time

Qualifying 2 (Q2)
FM is using the same soft tyres that he used in Q1
FM 1:38.566
(PD P2)
MW 1:38.058
FA 1:37.930
SV 1:37.305
(JB P2)
(LH P2)
PM has stopped his Williams just off line but it’s right after a blind corner; no tyre marks so it looks like the car died rather than him spinning it
Red flag so the marshals can clear PM’s car; 7:59 remains on the clock
Replay shows the engine died coming out of Turn 19; he was trying to get back to the pits but instead he might be penalised for not pulling off the track
Session restarts
5mins left; bottom 7 are PD, RB, PM, SP, KK, VP, SB
KK and VP both leapfrog SP
1min left; bottom 7 are AS, PD, RB, KK, PM, SP, SB* (*still no lap time from SB!)
Chequered flag
(AS P10, pushing VP to P11)
Middle of the grid will be: VP, PD, RB, KK, PM, SP, SB

Qualifying 3 (Q3)
Battling for the top 10 grid spots are LH, JB, SV, MW, FA, FM, NR, MS, NH, AS
FA is first on track, on a set of used soft tyres
FA 1:37.454
(FM P2)
(JB P2)
LH 1:37.380
(MW P3)
SV 1:36.975
(NR P7)
3mins left; order is SV, LH, FA, MW, JB, FM, NR and no time yet from MS, NH, AS
Even SV is on track for the final flying lap
Chequered flag; SV will be last to set a lap time
(MW P2)
FA takes to the pit lane instead of completing his lap
SV aborts his flying lap too
Front of the grid: SV, MW, LH, FA, FM, JB, NR, MS, NH*, AS*
*NH & AS did not set a lap time in Q3

Provisional grid: SV, MW, LH, FA, FM, JB, NR, MS, NH, AS, VP, PD, RB, KK, PM, SP, SB, JA, HK, JT, TG, VL, JD, NK.

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