Hamilton steals Melbourne pole from Ricciardo

Hamilton steals Melbourne pole from Ricciardo

15 March 2014 – Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton grabbed pole position from under the nose of Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo during a dramatic, rain-affected qualifying session in Melbourne on Saturday afternoon.

After a dry start to proceedings, the heavens opened in the final minutes of the first qualifying phase, with the weather deteriorating enough to warrant the use of Pirelli's Full Wet tyre in the final shootout.

The works Mercedes machines of Nico Rosberg and Hamilton had control over the field after the first flurry of flying laps, with the German marque's strong dry weather pace carrying straight over to wet conditions.

While team-mate Sebastian Vettel suffered a Q2 elimination, Ricciardo was able to slash the gap to the leaders in the tricky conditions, emerging as Rosberg and Hamilton's greatest threat in the battle for the top spot.

On the final timed runs of the extended 12 minute session, Rosberg recovered from an off-track excursion at the Turn 9/10 chicane to take provisional pole position, but Ricciardo, one of the few drivers to gamble on the Intermediate rubber, and finally Hamilton made impressive gains after the chequered flag had dropped.

Kevin Magnussen was best of the rest behind a top three covered by 0.364 seconds. While fellow McLaren driver Jenson Button dropped out in Q2, the Danish rookie showed composure to comfortably make the Q3 cut.

Fernando Alonso was left to lead Ferrari's charge after team-mate Kimi Räikkönen crashed out at the end of the second phase, the Spaniard taking fifth position, narrowly ahead of Toro Rosso's Jean-Éric Vergne. The latter's team-mate, Daniil Kvyat, also made it through to claim eighth, just behind Force India driver Nico Hülkenberg.

Williams's Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas completed the top ten positions, although the latter will be hit with a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change, promoting key Q2 eliminees Button, Räikkönen and Vettel.

Sauber driver Adrian Sutil, Kamui Kobayashi – who impressively squeezed his Caterham into Q2 by using the early dry weather to his advantage – and Force India's Sergio Pérez also fell at the second hurdle.

Despite narrowly missing out on progression to Q2, Max Chilton was encouraged after getting the better of Marussia team-mate Jules Bianchi. The pair edged out Esteban Gutiérrez and Caterham's Marcus Ericsson.

At the tail-end of the order, Lotus's nightmare start to the 2014 campaign continued. Romain Grosjean was the last of the timed runners in Q1, while Pastor Maldonado spun out of the running. Gutiérrez, who has also been hit with a gearbox penalty, saves the pair the embarrassment of sharing the back row of the grid.

Sunday’s 58-lap Australian Grand Prix gets underway at 5pm local time (GMT +11)

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Saturday 20 December 2014

  2. McLaren sure it understands test woes 09:17

    McLaren sure it understands test woes

    McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier says the squad understands the problems which affected the team during its first...

    F1
  3. Video of the Day: Ferrari F1 demo in Bologna 05:11

    Video of the Day: Ferrari F1 demo in Bologna

    Watch highlights of Giancarlo Fisichella's Ferrari Formula 1 demo at the recent Bologna Motor Show.

    F1
  4. Friday 19 December 2014

  5. BayernLB files law suit against Ecclestone 17:31

    BayernLB files law suit against Ecclestone

    German bank BayernLB has confirmed that it has filed a law suit against Bernie Ecclestone in relation to the sale of Formula...

    F1
  6. Ferrari confirms Vergne as test driver 16:40

    Ferrari confirms Vergne as test driver

    Ferrari has confirmed that former Toro Rosso racer Jean-Éric Vergne has joined the team as test driver and will focus on car...

    F1
  7. F1 2014: Biggest controversies of the season 16:17

    F1 2014: Biggest controversies of the season

    Formula 1 was full of talking points both on and off the track in 2014, with team-mate clashes and regulations being...

    F1
  8. Rossi expecting boost for America in 2016 14:19

    Rossi expecting boost for America in 2016

    Alexander Rossi believes that 2016 could turn out to be a positive year for America's involvement in Formula 1, when Gene...

    F1
  9. Campos replaces Hilmer in GP3 line-up 12:09

    Campos replaces Hilmer in GP3 line-up

    Adrian Campos' eponymous team will replace Hilmer Motorsport in GP3 next season. Campos, whose outfit returned to GP2 in...

    GP3
  10. Toro Rosso on upwards trajectory – Tost 09:42

    Toro Rosso on upwards trajectory – Tost

    Toro Rosso Team Principal Franz Tost believes that his squad is on an upwards curve after the outfit recovered from a...

    F1
  11. Nasr chooses 12 as race number 07:44

    Nasr chooses 12 as race number

    Felipe Nasr has confirmed that he will race with number 12 when he makes his Formula 1 debut with Sauber in 2015. Nasr,...

    F1
  12. Video of the Day: Mercedes duo design cars 05:04

    Video of the Day: Mercedes duo design cars

    Mercedes-Benz has celebrated winning both Formula 1 world titles with special models of the AMG SL 63, created by drivers...

    F1
  13. Thursday 18 December 2014

  14. 17:03

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  15. Ecclestone formally reappointed to F1 board 16:40

    Ecclestone formally reappointed to F1 board

    Bernie Ecclestone has been reappointed to the Formula 1 board and will continue as CEO of the Formula One Group, while Luca...

    F1
  16. New Sauber passes FIA crash tests 16:06

    New Sauber passes FIA crash tests

    Sauber has confirmed that its 2015 Formula 1 chassis, the C34, has passed the first stage of the FIA's mandatory crash...

    F1
  17. Horner: Newey will still attend some races 14:09

    Horner: Newey will still attend some races

    Red Bull team boss Christian Horner says Adrian Newey will still attend a selection of Formula 1 races next season, even...

    F1
  18. Tech 1 signs Aurélien Panis for 2015 season 10:36

    Tech 1 signs Aurélien Panis for 2015 season

    Aurélien Panis, son of ex-Formula 1 driver Olivier, will graduate to Formula Renault 3.5 with the Tech 1 Racing squad next...

    FR 3.5
  19. Lotus approached Alonso over 2015 seat 09:23

    Lotus approached Alonso over 2015 seat

    Lotus owner Gérard Lopez has revealed that the team gave Fernando Alonso "a real option" to consider for the 2015 Formula 1...

    F1
  20. Video of the Day: Ferrari's Christmas lunch 05:09

    Video of the Day: Ferrari's Christmas lunch

    Ferrari recently hosted staff and representatives at its annual Gestione Sportiva Christmas Lunch.

    F1
  21. Wednesday 17 December 2014

  22. Ferrari tyre chief to leave at end of year 15:45

    Ferrari tyre chief to leave at end of year

    Ferrari tyre performance chief Hirohide Hamashima will leave the team at the end of the year, as the Scuderia continues to...

    F1
  23. Video: Carlos Sainz's title-winning season 13:49

    Video: Carlos Sainz's title-winning season

    Relive Carlos Sainz Jr.'s journey to the 2014 Formula Renault 3.5 title. Next year, the Spaniard graduates to Formula 1 with...

    FR 3.5
  24. Watson takes on expanded Toro Rosso role 12:07

    Watson takes on expanded Toro Rosso role

    Newly-appointed Toro Rosso Team Manager Graham Watson will take on an expanded role following Sporting Director Steve...

    F1
  25. Wolff: Spa clash allowed Mercedes to clear air 09:56

    Wolff: Spa clash allowed Mercedes to clear air

    Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says the clash between Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton at the Belgian Grand Prix allowed him to...

    F1
  26. Video of the Day: Hamilton on his 'greatest year' 05:17

    Video of the Day: Hamilton on his 'greatest year'

    Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton reflects on "the greatest year of my life" after winning the 2014 Formula 1 world title and...

    F1
  27. Tuesday 16 December 2014

  28. Fry, Tombazis to leave Ferrari in reshuffle 18:48

    Fry, Tombazis to leave Ferrari in reshuffle

    Ferrari has announced that Pat Fry and Nikolas Tombazis are to leave the outfit as part of a major reshuffle under new team...

    F1
  29. Stolen Red Bull trophies recovered from lake 15:57

    Stolen Red Bull trophies recovered from lake

    A number of trophies stolen in a burglary at Red Bull's Formula 1 headquarters earlier this month have been recovered from a...

    F1
  30. Ferrari secures backing from América Móvil 15:37

    Ferrari secures backing from América Móvil

    Ferrari has secured a new sponsor in the form of Mexican telecommunications giant América Móvil. The company's arrival f...

    F1
  31. Di Montezemolo: Vettel the right choice for Ferrari 13:12

    Di Montezemolo: Vettel the right choice for Ferrari

    Former Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo says the team made "the right choice" by signing Sebastian Vettel as Fernando...

    F1
  32. Vergne 'very happy' with Formula E debut 12:36

    Vergne 'very happy' with Formula E debut

    Jean-Éric Vergne says he was "very happy" with his debut weekend in Formula E, despite losing a potential victory on the...

    FE
  33. Marussia F1 assets to be auctioned 09:31

    Marussia F1 assets to be auctioned

    The collapsed Marussia Formula 1 team's various assets will begin to be auctioned off by administrators on Tuesday, the...

    F1
  34. Video of the Day: Red Bull's 2014 season review 05:04

    Video of the Day: Red Bull's 2014 season review

    Red Bull Racing takes a look back at its 2014 Formula 1 campaign in the form of a Parallax video.

    F1
  35. Monday 15 December 2014

  36. Gutiérrez named Ferrari reserve driver 14:55

    Gutiérrez named Ferrari reserve driver

    Ferrari has signed Esteban Gutiérrez as its test and reserve driver for the 2015 campaign. Gutiérrez makes the switch a...

    F1
  37. Alguersuari says Formula 1 is 'a big GP2' 14:53

    Alguersuari says Formula 1 is 'a big GP2'

    Ex-Toro Rosso driver Jaime Alguersuari says Formula 1 is now less of a challenge for rookies, describing the top echelon as...

    F1
  38. Frijns officially parts ways with Caterham 11:47

    Frijns officially parts ways with Caterham

    Robin Frijns has officially split from the Caterham Formula 1 team, with his contract expiring on Monday. The Dutchman...

    F1
  39. Video: Race Of Champions highlights 11:02

    Video: Race Of Champions highlights

    Enjoy highlights of the 2014 Race Of Champions, won by ex-Formula 1 driver David Coulthard.

    Misc
  40. Nielsen joins Williams as Sporting Manager 09:11

    Nielsen joins Williams as Sporting Manager

    Williams has appointed Steve Nielsen to a new role of Sporting Manager with immediate effect. Nielsen's switch comes just...

    F1
  41. Button insists multi-year McLaren deal necessary 08:57

    Button insists multi-year McLaren deal necessary

    Jenson Button says that a multi-year deal with McLaren was necessary due to the nature of the squad's new project with...

    F1
  42. Video of the Day: McLaren unveils 2015 line-up 05:02

    Video of the Day: McLaren unveils 2015 line-up

    Go behind-the-scenes at McLaren's Technology Centre in Woking during last week's announcement of its 2015 driver line-up.

    F1
  43. Sunday 14 December 2014

  44. Hamilton wins BBC Sports Personality of the Year 22:28

    Hamilton wins BBC Sports Personality of the Year

    World Champion Lewis Hamilton has added to his post-season accolades by winning the prestigious BBC Sports Personality of...

    F1
  45. 19:20

    Latest Photos: Race Of Champions 2014

    Misc
  46. Coulthard storms to Race Of Champions crown 19:18

    Coulthard storms to Race Of Champions crown

    Former Formula 1 driver David Coulthard became the Champion Of Champions as he beat Mercedes reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein...

    Misc
  47. Lorenzo takes class win in Abu Dhabi 15:46

    Lorenzo takes class win in Abu Dhabi

    Two-time MotoGP World Champion Jorge Lorenzo took a victory in the Gentlemen class at the Gulf 12 Hours in Abu Dhabi,...

    Misc
more news