“Almost lost his voice from screaming”: After sensational pole, Hamilton roars his joy over the radio.
After his stunning final lap in Formula 1 qualifying, Lewis Hamilton couldn’t believe his luck. The Mercedes driver surprisingly secures pole position in front of Max Verstappen. “I almost lost my voice from screaming in the car,” says Hamilton.
Lewis Hamilton cheered breathlessly into the microphone after his coup in Budapest. The Hungary record winner conquered in Mercedes somewhat surprisingly took pole position for the Formula 1 race at the Hungaroring and stopped Max Verstappen’s streak.
The defending champion in the Red Bull had last driven five times in a row from position one on the grid, this time he was three thousandths of a second behind superstar Hamilton. “I almost lost my voice from screaming in the car,” said the enthusiastic Silver Arrow driver.
Hamilton on pole in Hungary: “It almost feels like the first time”
For the 104th time in his career, the Brit will start from the front on Sunday. “It almost feels like the first time. I didn’t think it would be enough for us. I packed everything into the last lap. I have to try to get a good night’s sleep today. I’m so thankful to be back up here. The team worked so hard,” Hamilton said. In December 2021 he was last on the grid.
For Verstappen, on the other hand, things didn’t go as smoothly as in the previous weeks. The update on his car has not yet had the desired effect. “I found it somewhat difficult to find confidence in the car,” admitted the World Championship leader. His seventh win in a row is still possible, for Red Bull it would even be the twelfth success in a row – and thus a record.
New tire rule creates excitement in qualifying
Third in qualifying was Lando Norris in a McLaren. Nico Hülkenberg steered his Haas to a good tenth place. “It couldn’t have been more today,” said the Rhinelander on Sky.
A new tire rule caused plenty of action on the track in the first part of qualifying. For the first time, the teams were told which rubber compounds they were allowed to use. In the first run, this was the hardest and therefore most durable tyre, but it is also much more difficult to bring it up to the temperature required for fast laps.
Mercedes boss bangs his fist on the table after Russell is fired early
Therefore, the pilots drove many laps in pursuit of the best time, much to the delight of the spectators. Only at the very end did the field sort itself out – and surprisingly the working day was quickly over for Mercedes driver George Russell. 18th place was not enough for progress. Team boss Toto Wolff thumped his fist on a table in the pits in anger.
For the second section, the fastest 15 drivers then had to use medium-hard tires, in the final the top ten had to use the softest compound. For the entire race weekend at the Hungaroring, manufacturer Pirelli is only providing the teams with 11 instead of the usual 13 sets of tyres. The aim of the savings is to increase the sustainability of Formula 1.
This rule change is to be tested a second time at the beginning of September at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza. After that, the World Association, the Formula 1 top and the racing teams decide whether it will become the standard for the coming season.
Formula 1 will continue to drive in Budapest until at least 2032
It is already certain that Formula 1 will continue to drive in Budapest until at least 2032. Shortly before qualifying, the racing series announced the premature extension of the contract by a further five years. This is linked to a modernization of the track with a new pit building and a new main grandstand. The construction work should be completed by 2026.
Until then, parts of the Hungaroring will still exude the charm of socialist times. In 1986, the first guest appearance of Formula 1 took place here. The circuit itself is known among experts as “Monaco without walls” because overtaking is so difficult on the track, which is only 4.381 kilometers long. The hunt for the best starting positions is therefore particularly important.
World champion Verstappen had to sweat unusually early after the time for his first lap was canceled in the second round. The Red Bull star illegally got all four wheels next to the boundary lines. But Verstappen stayed cool and progressed safely. But this time it wasn’t enough for the expected pole position.