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Hamilton concerned about Ferrari pace, passing opportunities in Hungary

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Lewis Hamilton talked down his chances of a sixth Hungarian Grand Prix win after qualifying fourth on Saturday, believing that Ferrari’s pace advantage combined with a procession in the race could put victory out of reach.

Hamilton appeared to be in the running for a record-equalling 68th career pole after topping Q2, only for Ferrari to up its pace through Q3 and sweep to a front row lock-out.

Hamilton made a mistake on his first Q3 lap, causing him to err on the side of caution with his final effort, leaving him fourth on the grid behind Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas.

“This hasn’t been the easiest weekend for us. The car didn’t feel completely underneath me during practice but we made some changes into qualifying and the feeling started to improve,” Hamilton said.

“We knew Ferrari would be quick after seeing their pace this morning, so considering that fact I think we did pretty well to lock out row two.

“My laps in qualifying were generally good but I made a mistake in Turn 4 on the first run in Q3, so after that it was all about getting in a banker lap to make sure I set a time.

“Looking to the race, maybe strategy or the tires will come into play in a bigger way. Ferrari seems to have the upper hand this weekend and this race is usually a procession on a circuit where it is hard to follow, so there aren’t many opportunities to gain positions.

“But we will be giving it everything we can.”

The Hungarian Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 7am ET on Sunday.

Racing world reacts to Danica Patrick’s Daytona, Indy double news

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Here’s a sampling of quotes and social media reaction to Danica Patrick’s news announced earlier Friday that this would be her last full-time season as a driver, and that she’ll race in the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500 only in 2018.

This ends a full-time stretch in the top flights of NASCAR and IndyCar. She was in NASCAR from 2012 through 2017, and IndyCar from 2005 through 2011.

Her’s her own post on Twitter and Instagram.

Well…. 2018 Daytona 500 and Indy 500 here I come. 🙌🏼

A post shared by Danica Patrick (@danicapatrick) on

IMS President J. Douglas Boles

“We’re glad Danica plans to return to the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil next May,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “Her final career start will make what’s already shaping up to be a terrific Month of May even more interesting for our fans.

“It’s also fitting that Danica is wrapping up her career at the place and in the race where she became a household name and captured the world’s attention in 2005 – the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indianapolis 500. We’re looking forward to seeing her back in an Indy car next May alongside all of the tremendous drivers of the Verizon IndyCar Series.”

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