Spanish F1 Grand Prix - Qualifying

Starting grid for the 2014 Spanish Grand Prix

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The beginning of the European F1 season in Spain this weekend has seen a number of teams introduce upgrades for their cars, initially threatening to shake up the pecking order. However, once again, it was Mercedes who reigned supreme during qualifying as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg locked out the front row of the grid.

Hamilton managed to edge out his teammate by one-tenth of a second in the final part of qualifying yesterday, and secured his fourth pole position of the season in the process. Daniel Ricciardo finished as the ‘best of the rest’ in third, whilst Valtteri Bottas and Romain Grosjean both put in remarkable displays to qualify fourth and fifth respectively.

However, Kevin Magnussen and Sebastian Vettel both had car trouble, and were unable to post a time when it mattered on Saturday.


  • Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne was handed a 10 place grid penalty on Friday evening after the team failed to correctly fit his left-rear tire during the second free practice session. The team was also handed a €30,000 fine. In qualifying, Vergne did not run in Q2, and instead opted to save a set of tires.
  • Sebastian Vettel suffered a gearbox failure during Q3 on Saturday, and was therefore classified in 10th place. However, after changing said gearbox, the defending world champion will start the race from 15th place.
  • Pastor Maldonado has been permitted to race by the stewards. He failed to post a time during Q1, and therefore was outside of the 107% rule.
  • The stewards also conducted an anti-doping test as per the FIA guidelines on Pastor Maldonado, Adrian Sutil, Nico Hulkenberg, Jean-Eric Vergne and Romain Grosjean.


1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes
3. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull
4. Valtteri Bottas Williams
5. Romain Grosjean Lotus
6. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari
7. Fernando Alonso Ferrari
8. Jenson Button McLaren
9. Felipe Massa Williams
10. Nico Hulkenberg Force India
11. Sergio Perez Force India
12. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso
13. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber
14. Kevin Magnussen McLaren
15. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull
16. Adrian Sutil Sauber
17. Max Chilton Marussia
18. Jules Bianchi Marussia
19. Marcus Ericsson Caterham
20. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham
21. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso
22. Pastor Maldonado Lotus

You can watch the Spanish Grand Prix live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 7:30am ET today.

Lorenzo looking to Honda, Ducati for help in MotoGP title race

ALCANIZ, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 27:  Jorge Lorenzo of Spain and Movistar Yamaha MotoGP celebrates the victory on the podium at the end of the MotoGP race during the MotoGP of Spain - Race at Motorland Aragon Circuit on September 27, 2015 in Alcaniz, Spain.  (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)
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Jorge Lorenzo hopes that he can get some help from the Honda and Ducati riders in his championship battle with Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi in the final four races of the 2015 MotoGP season.

Lorenzo currently trails Rossi by 14 points at the top of the riders’ championship, and with just four races to go, barring an unlikely run of results, the title will go to a Yamaha rider for the first time since 2012.

The formbook offers little in the way of clues for the Lorenzo/Rossi battle, for although Lorenzo has won more races, Rossi has been more consistent, finishing off the podium just once this season.

Lorenzo had hoped to reel Rossi in last time out at Motorland Aragon, but the Italian rider managed to finish third, minimizing the damage of his teammate’s victory.

Nevertheless, Lorenzo was pleased to bounce back after two disappointing races at Silverstone and Misano, having lost ground on Rossi in the title race.

“I am very happy with this victory because it came after two races that were a bit disappointing and I expected to take more points, but due to a few factors and especially the weather, I failed to achieve the desired result,” Lorenzo said. “The victory in Motorland [Aragon] was crucial.”

Rossi was beaten to second place by Honda’s Dani Pedrosa after a titanic battle in the closing stages of the last race, and Lorenzo hopes that the Spaniard, among others, could aid his cause inadvertently again in the remaining four races.

“[Pedrosa] was very strong and it was useful to recover the points lost earlier and it has given me more chances to recover with four races left until the end,” Lorenzo said.

“But [Marc] Marquez or maybe the two Ducati riders could also stand in front of Valentino and take away some points. It is a real possibility, but very dangerous for us both.”

The next round of the MotoGP season takes place at Motegi, Japan next weekend.

Steiner: Haas F1 Team could not afford rookie mistakes

KANNAPOLIS, NC - SEPTEMBER 29:  (L-R) Gunther Steiner, team principal of Haas F1 Team, Romain Grosjean of France, and Gene Haas, owner of Haas F1 Team, pose for a photo opportunity after Haas F1 Team announced Grosjean as their driver for the upcoming 2016 Formula 1 season on September 29, 2015 in Kannapolis, North Carolina.  (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Stewart-Haas Racing via Getty Images)
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Günther Steiner has said that Haas Formula 1 Team could not afford to have its drivers making rookie mistakes during its debut season in the sport, reasoning the decision to only sign experienced racers for 2016.

On Tuesday, Haas unveiled Lotus driver Romain Grosjean as its first signing for next season, luring the Frenchman away from Enstone after ten years of association.

The second seat is set to go to either Esteban Gutierrez or Jean-Eric Vergne, who both work as development drivers for Ferrari and both have at least two seasons of racing under their belt.

As team principal, Steiner (pictured left) will work under team owner Gene Haas, and said that both had agreed that a rookie driver for season one would be unwise.

“We looked around a lot to find the right guy because we wanted somebody with experience but still hungry to do something, to go with us this long way,” Steiner explained.

“I started talks with the management of Romain in Barcelona to see if he’s interested and, you know, we spoke to quite a few drivers, and in the end I spoke also with technical people, what they think about Romain, how he develops a car.

“We have got a steep mountain to climb here, new team, all new team members, so we needed somebody who knows what he’s doing. I think in the end we found the right guy because he has so much ‘want to drive’ now, and he’s still aggressive or still wants it.

“He’s not [so] young anymore that he’s inexperienced. We lose time by having accidents or doing rookie mistakes. I think we just picked the best one out there for what we are doing, and we focused on him and got him, and we are very happy and we are looking forward to working with him.”