Hungarian Grand Prix qualifying: Max Verstappen beats Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas to score first pole position of his career

3 Aug

Max Verstappen held off the challenge from Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas to secure the first pole position of his career for Sunday’s Hungarian Grand Prix.

Just six days after his sublime drive to victory in the rain at Hockenheim, Verstappen thrilled his travelling orange army once more with another imperious display.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen has sparked life back into the F1 season by taking on Mercedes duo Hamilton and Bottas

The 21-year-old lit up the time sheets with a Hungaroring track record, finishing just 0.016 seconds ahead of Bottas with reigning Formula 1 champion Hamilton in third, two tenths back.

Verstappen crossed the line first, his lap greeted with huge cheers from the main grandstand, and despite late improvements by both Bottas and Hamilton, the Mercedes duo were unable to usurp the flying Dutchman.

The Ferrari pair of Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel line up fourth and fifth with Verstappen’s team-mate Pierre Gasly sixth.

Leclerc hit the wall in Q1 after losing control of his Ferrari at the final corner. But swift repairs by his team allowed the Monegasque to carry on.

Max Verstappen celebrates the first pole position of his F1 career

“The car has felt good all weekend and it was flying in qualifying,” said Verstappen, moments after capturing pole.

“I am very happy about today. There is still a race to do and that is the most important thing.”

Hamilton, who holds a 63-point lead over Verstappen in the standings, said: “We always target first, but it got away from me.

“We are in a good position to fight for the win so we will be pushing hard for the victory tomorrow.

“I am always down for a fight. It is a long way down to turn one. It is not easy to overtake but hopefully we can give them a run for their money.”

Who is on pole for Australian Grand Prix: UK race start time, TV channel and live stream for 2019 F1 season opener in Melbourne

15 Mar

Formula One is set to roar back into life this weekend with the 2019 season getting underway at the Australian Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton is looking for a sixth world championship after lifting the title once again last season.

Lewis Hamilton will begin his F1 title defence at the Australian Grand Prix

And he has made quite the start to his season, setting a new track record – and then beating it again – to take pole position in Melbourne.

Hamilton clocked a one minute 21.014-second lap in Q2 and went more than half a second faster to claim his 84th career pole and sixth consecutive at Albert Park.

He will start alongside team-mate Valtteri Bottas while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel qualified third, 0.704 seconds behind the five-time world champion.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was 0.130 seconds further behind and Vettel’s new team-mate Charles Leclerc starts fifth ahead of Haas drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.

When is the Australian Grand Prix?

The Australian Grand Prix will be held on Sunday, March 17 with the race set to get underway at 5.10am UK time or 4.10pm in Melbourne.

What TV channel is the Australian Grand Prix on and can I live stream it?

The Australian Grand Prix will be live on Sky Sports F1 from 3.30am on Sunday.

Non-Sky Sports subscribers can watch the race on TV by ordering a NOW TV Day Pass for £8.99.

To live stream the race, log into your Sky Go account.

Ferrari star Sebastian Vettel won the Australian Grand Prix last season

Where is the Australian Grand Prix held?

As has been the case since 1996, the Australian Grand Prix will be held at Albert Park, Melbourne.

Drivers will race 58 laps.

Ferrari star Sebastian Vettel has won the race in the last two seasons while Hamilton last won it for Mercedes in 2015.

Formula One 2019: Driver line-up

Mercedes: Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas

Ferrari: Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc

Red Bull: Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly

Renault: Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg

Haas: Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen

Mclaren: Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris

Racing Point: Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll

Alfa Romeo: Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi

Toro Rosso: Daniil Kvyat and Alex Albon

Williams: George Russell and Robert Kubica

Daniel Ricciardo to leave Red Bull for Renault at end of 2018 as Max Verstappen puts Australian in his shadow

3 Aug

Daniel Ricciardo will quit Red Bull for Renault next after the 2018 season after becoming fed up at being the team’s No2 driver.

Max Verstappen, nine years Ricciardo’s junior, is the team’s top priority and Ricciardo has had enough, with the team confirming his departure on Friday.

Ricciardo’s five-year stay at Red Bull is set to come to an end

The Australian, 29, also held talks with McLaren and had his sights set on a dream move to Ferrari, according to the Mail.

Ricciardo’s decision to leave came after a meeting with the Red Bull owner in Austria but it did not convince him he was a valued member of the team.

After missing out on Ricciardo, McLaren will likely pick up Carlos Sainz, who is out of contract at Renault and will likely be forced out by their new arrival.

Ricciardo made his debut in Formula One in with Red Bull sister cars Hispania and Toro Rosso before stepping up to the main team to replace Mark Webber in 2014.

He sits fifth in the current drivers’ standings, one place above teammate Max Verstappen

He won three races to finish third in the drivers’ standings in his first season with Red Bull, but then slipped to eighth a year later before bouncing back to third in 2016.

Ricciardo currently sits fifth in the 2018 table with two wins to his name, including a first Monaco Grand Prix triumph.

But Dutchman Verstappen, 20, is the team’s de facto No1 driver after being handed a bumper deal last October.

He is the youngest-ever race winner in F1 but sits 13 points below Ricciardo in this year’s standings, having been hit with three retirements in the first 12 races.

Ricciardo feels the team have prioritised 20-year-old Verstappen, right, over him

Confirming Ricciardo’s exit, a Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner said: “We fully respect Daniel’s decision to leave Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and we wish him all the best in the future.

“We would like to thank him for his dedication and the role he has played since joining the team in 2014, the highlights of course being the seven wins and the 29 podiums he has achieved so far with us.”

No announcement has been made on a replacement for Ricciardo at Red Bull.

There are still nine races remaining on the 2018 F1 calendar, which is currently on its summer break.

The move will push Carlos Sainz out of Renault, with McLaren poised to sign him up for 2019

Ricciardo’s decision to quit comes just days after hinting he was about to sign a new deal with Red Bull ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix in three weeks’ time.

He told Sky Sports: “It will definitely be done by Spa. Whether it gets announced over the summer break or in Spa (I don’t know).

“It’s just a little bit of fune tuning here and there, it’s all good.

“You will hear something soon, I’m sure.”