Home Sport Hamilton masters the rain to put Mercedes on pole

Hamilton masters the rain to put Mercedes on pole


Despite wet conditions, Formula One world champions Lewis Hamilton showed his class to put Mercedes in pole position for Sunday's Styrian Grand Prix.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain steers his car during the qualifying session for the Styrian Formula One Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring racetrack in Spielberg, Austria, on Saturday. The Styrian F1 Grand Prix will be held on Sunday. Picture: Darko Bandic / AP

SPIELBERG – Six-times Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton showed his mastery of wet conditions to put Mercedes on pole position for the first Styrian Grand Prix at Austria’s Red Bull Ring on Saturday.

In a session that started 46 minutes late due to heavy rain that washed out final practice, the Briton powered through the spray in a time 1.2 seconds quicker than Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

McLaren’s Spaniard Carlos Sainz will line up third, with Hamilton’s Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas – winner of the season-opener at the same circuit last weekend – fourth fastest.

“What a tricky day,” said the Briton after his stunning performance.

“The weather was incredibly difficult out there for all of us. A lot of the time you couldn’t even see where you were going…I love these days.”

The battle was between Hamilton and Verstappen, with the Dutch 22-year-old going fastest two minutes from the end but the champion slapping him down again with a final effort of one minute 19.273 seconds.

Verstappen then lost control on his final flying effort, sliding wide.