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Lewis Hamilton takes pole position in Shanghai - Mercedes and Red Bull dominate as Maldonado fails to start

Published by Christine

Lewis Hamilton takes pole position in Shanghai
Credit: Mercedes AMG Petronas
Lewis Hamilton takes pole position in Shanghai audio waveform

Qualifying in China began with the news that Pastor Maldonado wouldn’t be taking part. The Lotus driver had stopped during final practice with a sensor issue and engine leak, and it wasn’t fixed in time for him to qualify. That left Gutiérrez as the other driver dropping out along with the four regular backmarker drivers in the first session.

As it was a damp qualifying, the choice between intermediates and wet tyres was constant. Inters seemed to be the ideal choice, but there were still lots of drivers fighting for grip. Kimi Räikkönen struggled in his Ferrari, dropping out in Q2, along with both McLarens, Sutil, Kvyat and Bahrain podium finisher Sergio Pérez.

Into the top ten shootout, Romain Grosjean secured his best qualifying this season with a tenth place. The two Williams drivers both impressed when they hadn’t been expecting much from the wet conditions. It was a fight between Mercedes and Red Bull for pole, with Hamilton dominating and Rosberg spinning to finish fourth. Ricciardo led Vettel to split the Mercedes pair.