Lewis Hamilton beats Sebastian Vettel to United States GP F1 pole

Lewis Hamilton claimed his 72nd Formula 1 pole position with a dominant performance in qualifying for the United States Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton beats Sebastian Vettel to United States GP F1 pole

The Mercedes driver was fastest in all three segments of qualifying, ending up 0.239s clear of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

This was despite a poor final sector on his Hamilton's second Q3 run preventing him from improving, meaning the 1m33.108s he set on his first attempt was good enough for pole.

Vettel was only fourth on the first runs in Q3, but he hooked up a strong second lap to jump ahead of the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas, who also lost time in the final sector and did not improve on his first run time.

Daniel Ricciardo was fourth fastest thanks to setting his laptime before Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, the duo setting identical marks of 1m33.577s.

Max Verstappen, who has a 15-place grid penalty, was sixth fastest and is the only driver from the top 10 in qualifying who will start on super-softs rather than ultra-softs having used the slower Pirelli compound to set his Q2 time.

Esteban Ocon was seventh fastest, a second off Verstappen, while Carlos Sainz Jr completed only one run in Q3 thanks to only having one set of fresh ultra-softs, ending up eighth.

Fernando Alonso and Sergio Perez - who only had used tyres for his first Q3 run - rounded out the top 10.

Felipe Massa was eliminated in Q2 after a late improvement from Perez, missing out by less than half-a-tenth and ending up 11th.

Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat was 12th ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne, who has a five-place grid penalty thanks to the upgraded Honda V6 engine that was introduced at the start of the weekend, and Romain Grosjean.

Nico Hulkenberg ended qualifying 15th having opted not to run in Q2 for what the team described as "strategic" reasons because of his 20-place grid penalty for engine component changes.

Sauber's Marcus Ericsson was the quickest of the drivers to be eliminated in Q1, missing out thanks to being just seven-thousandths slower than Grosjean.

That put him ahead of Lance Stroll, who complained over the radio of a deployment problem on his final run that he subsequently said cost him eight-tenths on the back straight.

The Williams driver is also being investigated by stewards for impeding Grosjean, having jinked to his right and off the track while the Haas driver was attempting to go around the outside of him near the end of the lap.

Toro Rosso debutant Brendon Hartley, who has a 25-place grid penalty, was 18th fastest having briefly lifted himself out of the dropzone early in the final-run flurry before being shuffled back.

The New Zealander was ultimately only 0.054s off a place in Q2, having lapped eighth-tenths slower than team-mate Kvyat's Q1 time.

Pascal Wehrlein was 19th for Sauber, with Kevin Magnussen slowest for Haas.

Magnussen is also being investigated by stewards for impeding Perez through Turns 13/14.

US GP starting grid

Pos Driver Car Time Gap
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m33.108s -
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m33.347s 0.239s
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m33.568s 0.460s
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m33.577s 0.469s
5 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m33.577s 0.469s
6 Esteban Ocon Force India/Mercedes 1m34.647s 1.539s
7 Carlos Sainz Jr. Renault 1m34.852s 1.744s
8 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Honda 1m35.007s 1.899s
9 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m35.148s 2.040s
10 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m35.155s 2.047s
11 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso/Renault 1m35.529s 2.421s
12 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1m35.870s 2.762s
13 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m36.842s 3.734s
14 Pascal Wehrlein Sauber/Ferrari 1m37.179s 4.071s
15 Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 1m36.868s 3.760s
16 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault 1m33.658s 0.550s
17 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 1m37.394s 4.286s
18 Nico Hulkenberg Renault - -
19 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Renault 1m36.889s 3.781s
20 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Honda 1m35.641s 2.533s


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