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.

FROM THE STEWARDS’ OFFICE

  • 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.

2014 SPANISH GRAND PRIX STARTING GRID

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.

Valtteri Bottas fastest in Friday F1 practices for Russian Grand Prix

F1 Sochi Valtteri Bottas
Dan Mullan/Getty Images
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SOCHI, Russia — Valtteri Bottas paced both F1 practices Friday for the Russian Grand Prix on Friday as Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton was slowed by damaged tires in the first session.

Bottas turned a fast lap of 1 minute, 33.519 seconds in the second session that bettered Hamilton’s 1:33.786.

Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo was more than a second behind Bottas in third at 1:34.577, followed by the McLaren Racing duo of Carlos Sainz Jr. (1:34.723) and Lando Norris (1:34.847).

In the first F1 session at Sochi, Valtteri Bottas set the pace with a time of 1 minute, 34.923 seconds, beating Ricciardo by half a second. Max Verstappen was third quickest in his Red Bull, a further 0.147 back.

Hamilton could only manage 19th fastest after locking up his tires and leaving them with a flat spot. Ferrari again struggled to find pace with Sebastian Vettel ninth and Charles Leclerc 11th.

HISTORY IN SIGHTLewis Hamilton aims to tie Michael Schumacher’s record

The first session was briefly red-flagged when Nicholas Latifi crashed his Williams. Carlos Sainz Jr. spun his McLaren backward into a barrier and broke off his rear wing.

Verstappen spun during the second session but avoided damage to his car.