Sebastian Vettel beat team-mate Kimi Raikkonen to a Ferrari front row lock-out after beating the track record of Budapest, as the Mercedes drivers couldn’t go much further than the second row.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel set a fastest lap of a 1.16.276, which put him over a tenth clear of team-mate Kimi Raikkonen, meanwhile down at Mercedes Bottas came out on top, whilst Vettel’s F1 title rival Hamilton was out-qualified by his Finn team-mate and could only manage fourth.
The Red Bull’s, who looked on the pace yesterday, could only manage fifth and sixth places in Max Verstappen’s advantage.
Story of the session
As the light went green, Mercedes and Ferrari took to the circuit early, with Ferrari easily claiming the upper hand, as Raikkonen headed Vettel by 0.294s, until Hamilton got within 0.1s of the Finn.
Responding to Hamilton’s times, the two Ferrari’s went for another go, as Vettel went fastest, edging Raikkonen by 0.120s.
Next up were the two Red Bull’s to set times, as Ricciardo could only manage fourth fastest, and some 0.6s off the pace. He was soon pipped by him teenage team-mate.
As the Red Bull’s found pace, Verstappen soon went second and just 0.022s adrift of Vettel’s pace-setting lap.
Bottas, meanwhile, struggled during his laps, and stayed some 0.6s adrift of the leading duo.
Upon his return to Formula One, Paul di Resta could only manage P19, but was only 0.7s off his team-mate Lance Stroll, despite just a few laps around Budapest.
As Q1 came to an end, Magnussen, Stroll, Wehrlein, Di Resta and Ericsson all faced elimination.
As Q2 got underway, the pole contending drivers were straight out onto circuit, as Vettel set a blistering 1.16.802, whilst Hamilton was almost 0.4s slower in second place, despite running off the circuit during numerous occasions during his lap. Raikkonen was a tenth further back, with Bottas still on the back foot.
Verstappen soon took to circuit for Red Bull and slotted into second behind Vettel, albeit 0.226s adrift.
The McLaren’s and Renault’s were next to set hot laps, as Hulkenberg went sixth ahead of Ricciardo, whilst Alonso and Vandoorne went P8 and P9 respectively.
The two Mercedes soon took to track for a second time, as Hamilton went fastest by 0.109s, setting a 1.16.693, however Bottas still struggled to hook up a lap.
As Q2 came to an end, Palmer, Ocon, Kvyat, Perez and Grosjean all faced elimination.
Upon the first runs, Vettel went fastest with a 1.16.276, which put him 0.355s ahead of Bottas then came Ricciardo and Raikkonen. Meanwhile, Hamilton made yet another mistake in the first sector, and abandoned his first lap.
Verstappen soon set a 1.16.797 to beat his Australian team-mate to go third fastest.
As the Mercedes set out for their second runs, they got much closer to Ferrari but Raikkonen soon got his act together, he went second to get Ferrari a front row lock-out.