Grand Prix of Brazil – Qualifying

As expected, there has not been any public update of whether Hamilton’s second pit stop in Mexico was necessary for safety reasons or if it was just to keep Rosberg in the lead. With ROS only 21 points ahead of VET, will we see a similar move by the team this weekend?

BBC reports “Red Bull have confirmed they will race in Formula 1 next season after months of saying they could quit if they could not obtain a competitive engine.” Rumour is they’ll take a Renault engine but modify it themselves.

BBC also report that “Hamilton was involved in a minor road accident in Monaco on Monday.” He hit a stationary vehicle!

Penalties so far:

  • RIC has a 10-place penalty for using the new Renault engine
  • BOT was lucky to only get a 3-place penalty and two points on his licence for overtaking NAS when red flags were shown

HAM was fastest in FP3, followed by ROS, VET, KVY, RIC.

After FP3, McLaren stripped down ALO’s gearbox; will he be able to take part in Qualifying?

Air temperature 29°C; track 46°C; a little overcast but no threat of rain

Qualifying session 1 (Q1)
Green lights but no-one rushing to get on track
BBC say expected cut-off time to reach Q2 will be around 1:13.9
Over 3 minutes gone; HUL exits the pit lane
HUL 1:13.824
MAS 1:13.369
VES 1:13.107
BOT 1:12.934
ROS 1:11.746
ROS and HAM both running options on their first laps – saving primes for the race?
HAM 1:11.682
Radio for ALO – told to stop immediately
ALO parks well off-track without setting a time
5mins left of Q1; bottom 5 are RSI, STE and no times from GRO, MAL and ALO
2mins left; GRO and MAL set times so bottom 5 are ERI, BUT, RSI, STE & ALO
MAS on a fast lap trying to improve on P14; NAS moves onto the racing line and MAS has to run off-track
Chequered flag
ERI to P15, relegates MAL
ALO sits in a marshals deckchair, catching some sun
Back of the grid: MAL, BUT, RSI, STE, ALO

FIA tweet: “The stewards will look at the Turn 11 incident involving Brazilians Nasr and Massa after the session”

BUT & ALO pose for a photo on the podium – they’ve not seen one in a while 🙂

Qualifying session 2 (Q2)
ROS and HAM on options again
ROS 1:12.213
HAM 1:11.665
Radio for ROS telling him to do another quick lap; ROS questions the tyre wear; told to box (pit) instead
5mins left of Q2; bottom 5 are VES and no times from GRO, RAI, VET, RIC
(VET P2)
2mins left; bottom 5 are ERI, NAS, MAS, VES and no time from GRO
GRO spins off but avoids the barriers
MAS to P8; relegates SAI
GRO crosses the line in P15 but he’ll have time for one flying lap
NAS P10; PER to P11
Chequered flag; bottom 5 are PER, SAI, ERI, VES, GRO
VES to P8; NAS back to P11
SAI to P12
Middle of the grid: NAS, SAI, PER, ERI, GRO

Qualifying session 3 (Q3)
Top 10 shootout is between HAM, VET, ROS RAI, BOT*, HUL, KVY, VES, RIC* & MAS
(*BOT & RIC have penalties)
ROS 1:11.461
HAM P2
HUL P3
BOT P3
VET P3
RAI P5
KVY P7
RIC P6
MAS P7
5mins left; order is ROS, HAM, VET, BOT, RAI, RIC, MAS, HUL, KVY; no time from VES
Final quick laps
Chequered flag
KVY P6
BOT P4
ROS 1:11.282
VES P9
HUL P5
VET P3
HAM improves but still P2
MAS P8
RAI P5
RIC P9
Front of the grid: ROS, HAM, VET, BOT*, RAI, HUL, KVY, MAS, RIC*, VES
HAM just 0.078sec behind ROS

Provisional grid: ROS, HAM, VET, BOT*, RAI, HUL, KVY, MAS, RIC*, VES; NAS, SAI, PER, ERI, GRO; MAL, BUT, RSI, STE, ALO
*BOT 3-spot penalty; RIC 10-spots.
No word yet about a penalty for NAS.

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