Hamilton rallies from Q3 error to take Bahrain GP pole


Lewis Hamilton will start the Bahrain Grand Prix from pole position after edging out Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg in the final Q3 shootout on Saturday evening.

Hamilton produced a fastest lap of 1:29.493 – the quickest lap ever recorded around the Bahrain International Circuit – in the last stage of qualifying to take his 51st career pole position.

After being provisionally scrapped for Bahrain, the elimination qualifying format made its second appearance after the teams failed to agree on an alternative last week.

Much as it did in Australia, it proved effective early on in Q1 and Q2 as more cars were out on track putting in laps, yet it once again caused pole to be settled with three minutes remaining in Q3.

First blood in Q3 went to Rosberg, who edged out Vettel by one-tenth of a second for P1 with Raikkonen following in third. Hamilton ran wide at the final corner, costing him time to leave him seven-tenths adrift of Rosberg ahead of their final runs.

Sitting fourth, Hamilton had to get out early for his last bid for pole, but duly delivered to go half a second quicker than Rosberg and take provisional pole.

Rosberg could not respond with his final lap, falling 0.077 seconds short of his teammate in second place, while Vettel finished half a second back in third ahead of Raikkonen.

Daniel Ricciardo led Red Bull’s charge in fifth ahead of the Williams duo of Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa, with Nico Hulkenberg rounding out the top eight for Force India.

Following his charge to sixth place on Haas F1 Team’s debut in Australia, Romain Grosjean continue his strong start to the season by scoring the American team’s first top-10 start by qualifying ninth, narrowly missing out on a place in Q3.

Toro Rosso’s patchy record in Bahrain continued as Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz Jr. qualified 10th and 11th, while Stoffel Vandoorne impressed in his maiden F1 qualifying session to finish 12th, beating teammate Jenson Button in 14th.

Esteban Gutierrez split the McLarens in the second Haas, while Daniil Kvyat struggled once again in qualifying, finishing two seconds off the pace of leader Hamilton in Q2 in P15.

Manor’s Pascal Wehrlein was arguably the unsung hero of qualifying, producing a quick lap early on before improving to hoist himself out of immediate danger to qualify 16th ahead of Marcus Ericsson and Sergio Perez.

Renault struggled for pace as Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer could only finish 19th and 20th respectively, the latter being knocked out after Vandoorne improved his lap with just a handful of seconds. Magnussen will start Sunday’s race from the pit lane after receiving a penalty in practice.

Rio Haryanto struggled to emulate teammate Wehrlein, finishing 21st, while Felipe Nasr was the first casualty of Q1 in 22nd.

The Bahrain Grand Prix is live on NBCSN from 10:30am ET on Sunday.

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change