Sebastian Vettel is pleased to be starting the Belgian Grand Prix from second place following a difficult qualifying session in tricky conditions at Spa-Francorchamps today.
The German driver took advantage of a drying track towards the end of Q3 to provisionally put his Red Bull on pole position, only for Lewis Hamilton to snatch P1 away from him moments later. However, given the conditions, Vettel is pleased with his showing.
“It was difficult to know how fast you could go, I saw Lewis catching and thought I could have gone a bit quicker here and there, but in the end it was quite close across the line,” the defending world champion said in a team statement. “In these conditions anything can happen.
“I’m happy today; the boys did a good job with the change from slicks to intermediates which got us an extra lap and it was a good day for the team.”
Vettel is currently enduring something of a pole position ‘drought’ by his own exceptionally high standards, having failed to start from P1 since the Canadian Grand Prix at the beginning of June. However, in that time he has won two races and extended his championship lead to 38 points, laying a tough challenge down for any potential challengers.
EDITOR’S NOTE: NBCSN will air additional Dakar Rally highlights on Monday at 7 p.m. ET.
As it has done so for four decades, the 40th annual Dakar Rally – the most grueling test of man and machine anywhere – produced a number of surprise finishes and also several disappointments for drivers or riders who were expected to do well in the nearly 5,600-mile trek that began in Peru and continued through Bolivia and ending in Argentina.
NBCSN has aired highlights from all 14 stages (actually 13, because one stage was completely rained out) during the Rally’s two-week run, which concluded Saturday.
Here’s some of the “best of” highlights from the overall Rally highlights, followed by a quick guide that gives you wrapups to all 14 stages.
So, without further adieu, here’s NBCSN’s “best of” the 2018 Dakar Rally:
2018 Dakar Rally: Best of cars
2018 Dakar Rally: Best of bikes
2018 Dakar Rally: Best of trucks
2018 Dakar Rally: Best of quads
Lastly, here’s a day-by-day wrapup of how the Rally played out.
MORE: Dakar Rally daily stages schedule, NBCSN broadcast schedule, list of all competitors.
MORE: Stage 14 overall Rally wrapup
MORE: Stage 13 wrapup
MORE: Stage 12 wrapup
MORE: Stage 11 wrapup
MORE: Stage 10 wrapup
MORE: Stage 9 cancelled due to weather, impassible course conditions
MORE: Stage 8 wrapup
MORE: Stage 7 wrapup
MORE: Stage 6 wrapup
MORE: Stage 5 wrapup
MORE: Stage 4 wrapup
MORE: Stage 3 wrapup
MORE: Stage 2 wrapup
MORE: Stage 1 wrapup