Lewis Hamilton is disappointed with Mercedes after the Spa qualification race.
The Belgian Grand Prix saw one of the craziest qualifying races of this season. Rain added to the drama of the Spa aura, and some insane results showed up.
Hamilton was the favourite to secure pole position in Belgium. However, he will line up in third position on the grid, behind title rival Max Verstappen and Williams driver George Russell.
Hamilton had already struggled during practice, and qualification was no different. He was disappointed with Mercedes afterwards, and voiced his frustrations on the radio.
After issuing a quick apology, Hamilton asked race engineer Peter ‘Bono’ Bonnington what went wrong and where he didn’t perform. He replied, “It’s mainly turn Turn 1 and Turn 18 braking.”
Hearing that, Hamilton expressed his disappointment with Mercedes’ strategy for qualification, saying, “We took too much temperature out of the tires. Wasn’t the right idea.”
Mercedes was struggling from the first minute. They came out on wets like the rest of the grid, with the notable exception of Williams, who went on intermediates. Williams went on insane speeds, and faster than even the top cars on the grid. This resulted in every team switching to inters, and better times started to crop up.
All to play for
Ultimately, Hamilton was very close to pole position. However, Russell pipped him to provisional pole, until Verstappen stole it in the dying seconds of Q3. Hamilton missed P2 by 0.013 seconds, while Russell’s insane pace was duly rewarded with his best ever qualifying session. It’s not a bad shout to suggest Russell could legitimately be a podium contender on race day.
However, you would be a fool to dismiss Hamilton at Spa, especially given his car, his pace, and his pedigree. He won the last season’s race as well, so you can’t put it past him to win and extend his lead over Verstappen by more points.