Hamilton: Rosberg did an awesome job

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Lewis Hamilton has praised his Mercedes teammate, Nico Rosberg, for doing an “awesome” job in qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix today.

Rosberg qualified on pole position, over one-quarter of a second ahead of Hamilton who will join him on the front row for the race tomorrow.

“A great job by the team and I’m so happy that we got a one-two qualifying result today,” Hamilton said in a team statement. “It’s a real bonus for us to be so high up, and that’s all down to the hard work that the team have put into this car, I can’t thank them enough.”

Although Hamilton would have liked to be on pole himself (having finished quickest in Q1 and Q2), he admitted that Rosberg perfected his lap.

“Of course, I’d like to be one place higher but Nico did an awesome job and really nailed his lap.”

Hamilton also admitted that there was still work to do in order to optimize the pace of the W04, as well as ensuring that the issues with tire wear do not re-appear from Bahrain.

“I’ve not been totally happy with the balance of my car all weekend, even today, so we need to look at it this evening and see what we can do for the race. Limiting the degradation is going to be my major challenge as the general pace isn’t too bad. It’s going to be tough to keep these positions tomorrow but we’ll give it our best shot.”

Lewis Hamilton has never won at the Circuit de Catalunya, but his pace in sector three suggests that he could be in with a shot of breaking this duck tomorrow should he remedy the problems with tire wear.

Social roundup: Racing world largely outraged by Verstappen penalty

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The discussion over Max Verstappen’s post-race five-second time penalty assessed in Sunday’s United States Grand Prix, issued when he tried to the inside of Kimi Raikkonen at the Turns 16, 17 and 18 carousel complex at Circuit of The Americas, will roll on far beyond today.

The debate today largely centered over consistency in adjudication and application of the rules, track limits themselves (always a sore subject at COTA given its wide runoff areas) or whether there should be permanent stewards.

In the immediate aftermath, though, Twitter lit up with outrage over Verstappen being assessed a five-second post-race time penalty.

Here’s a mere sampling of the reaction, below.