Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel has secured pole position for the Canadian Grand Prix, lapping the circuit in a new track record of 1:10.764. Valtteri Bottas made sure Mercedes will still be present on the front row of the grid while Max Verstappen was third fastest for Red Bull Racing.
Qualifying kicked off with both Williams and Haas cars exiting the pits. Grosjean however would not even make it out of the pitlane, as his engine started blowing out white smoke as soon as he left the box. The Frenchman stopped his Haas VF-18 at the end of the pitlane, following which his crew came to push him back.
Still, the session continued normally for everybody else with Magnussen going fastest until both Ferraris completed their first laps a minute later. Both Vettel and Raikkonen opted for several hot laps on the hypersoft tyres, with a cooldown lap in between. On the first two attempts, Raikkonen was faster, while on the third one Vettel had the upper hand.
Behind them, Bottas, Verstappen, Hamilton and Riccardo slotted in positions 3 to 6. Verstappen ruined one of his laps by going straight on at Turn 1, while Hamilton carried too much speed into Turn 6 on his first attempt. Hamilton eventually improved to third, 0.125s off of Vettel,.
Marcus Ericsson was even worse off, damaging his car against the wall at Turn 9.
McLaren meanwhile were in trouble towards the end of Q1, as their drivers were 15th and 16th a minute before the end of the session. Both men went out for late laps and only just made it thanks to improvements from both, leaving Gasly behind them.
Q2 predictably saw Ferrari and Mercedes go for the ultra softs, wary that those tyres may last a bit longer in the first stint of the race. Everybody else, including Red Bull went out on the faster hyper soft tyres.
Whether that choice from Red Bull was the trigger remains to be seen, but everybody went out again on the hyper softs. Vettel returned to the pits without attempting to improve after getting stuck in traffic on the main straight as people were trying to create space ahead of them.
In the dying seconds, Ricciardo improved to go fastest by 0.038s, but no other top 6 driver improved, mostly because they didn't want to. The drop-off in speed after the final chicane was obvious enough to know the aim way only to anticipate on strategy decisions made by others.
Both Renaults and both Force Indias join the top 10 in Q3.
Q3 saw Mercedes and Ferrari go out early, with Red bull waiting a couple of minutes longer.
5 minutes from the end, this resulted in Vettel being on provisional pole, 0.081s ahead of Bottas, and 3 tenths ahead of Raikkonen. Verstappen was 4th fastest, 0.001s slower than Raikkonen. Hamilton 5th and Ricciardo 6th.
The second runs saw Raikkonen make a mistake on Turn 1, making him coast back to the pits. Hamilton improved and jumped up to third, but Verstappen later improved on that too, positioning himself into third, in between both Mercedes. Vettel also improved on his final lap, underlining his speed throughout the entire qualifying session to take pole for tomorrow's Canadian Grand Prix.
|2||77||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes AMG||1:11.950||1:11.514||1:10.857||20|
|3||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||1:12.008||1:11.472||1:10.937||16|
|4||44||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG||1:11.835||1:11.740||1:10.996||21|
|6||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||1:12.459||1:11.434||1:11.116||18|
|8||31||Esteban Ocon||Force India Mercedes||1:12.577||1:12.141||1:12.084||14|
|10||11||Sergio Perez||Force India Mercedes||1:12.702||1:12.395||1:12.671||13|
|11||20||Kevin Magnussen||Haas Ferrari||1:12.680||1:12.606||-||22|
|12||28||Brendon Hartley||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:12.587||1:12.635||-||17|
|13||16||Charles Leclerc||Sauber Ferrari||1:12.945||1:12.661||-||22|
|14||14||Fernando Alonso||McLaren Renault||1:12.979||1:12.856||-||14|
|15||2||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren Renault||1:12.998||1:12.865||-||14|
|16||10||Pierre Gasly||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1:13.047||-||-||8|
|17||18||Lance Stroll||Williams Mercedes||1:13.590||-||-||8|
|18||35||Sergey Sirotkin||Williams Mercedes||1:13.643||-||-||10|
|19||9||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber Ferrari||1:14.593||-||-||6|