NOTEBOOK – Baku Qualifying

Features This Grand Prix

Nico Rosberg has taken pole after team-mate Lewis Hamilton crashed out breaking his suspension in qualifying for tomorrows Grand Prix of Europe. The world clipped the wall entering the narrow uphill section bringing out the red flag with just two minutes remaining of the session.

POLE LAP – Nico Rosberg

A long the long straight for Nico Rosberg starting with him crossing the pole position box on his way to turn one. Turns in beautifully to just tap the inside kerb and on exit before the short run to turn two which he takes the apex really well before running as close as he can to the wall.

Another long run to three again takes the apex before going to the wall on the exit and across the circuit before hitting the kerb on exit of four. Through the kink into five the first chicane which he takes well and on exit of six goes to the inside lining up well for seven.

Short run between eight nine ten takes it perfectly unlike Hamilton. Good through thirteen and fourteen which he seems to be flat out. Kerb through entry and on exit of fifteen. Good through seventeen where he puts his foot down to be flat through nineteen and twenty to cross the line with a 01:42.520.

Hamilton’s mistake

Well it could have been a different if Lewis Hamilton crash into the wall he looked ok through eight but got too close on exit of the narrow uphill section in the old town.

He said “It was me – I just wasn’t on it. I wasn’t hitting apexes; wasn’t hitting the right braking zones. These kinds of days come and go, and you just have to take the rough with the smooth.” But he won’t give up and that first section from turn nineteen to turn three could give him a chance tomorrow.

Perez P3

The third place by Sergio Perez is a surprise but Force India has a few circuits on the calendar where they perform really well. This could be one of them going forward into the future. Plus a great recovery after he crashed in FP3 this morning which shows Force India have a good car but he may struggle against the faster cars but they will they be able to hang on and the tighter section will play to their hands.

Manors best qualifying

One of surprises was Manor being ahead of Sauber, McLaren and both Renault’s they have been talking about making the jump over Sauber but two works teams is shocking and a win for them. However it could be difficult for them but who believed seriously that Haas would score points in Melbourne.

Racing director Dave Ryan said “This has been our strongest qualifying session all year and to have both cars so close to getting through to Q2, ahead of both Renaults, a Sauber and a McLaren, is quite an achievement.”

“It demonstrates just how far we have progressed, so well done to the entire team and especially Rio and Pascal who have been absolutely on it all day.”

Identical laps

In formula One you hardly see drivers set the same times to the .000 of an exactly but Red Bull will spin the story to say we are equal or ahead of Ferrari. But the rules say ‘3 priority will be given to the one who set it first.’

The headline will be spun differently by both teams Red Bull will be saying that they are equalling Ferrari on pace an Ferrari will spin it as we have lost ground to Red Bull. One thing we can say we will get the true picture in the race tomorrow afternoon.

Race preview

Tomorrow I think it will be Nico Rosberg’s race to lose and Sergio Perez could be key with Hamilton starting tenth. The question is will Ferrari repeat what they did at the start in Montreal. There will be accidents and safety cars because street circuits have a higher probability.



Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

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