Hamilton edges Rosberg for Canadian GP pole


Lewis Hamilton will start Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix from pole position after edging out Mercedes teammate and Formula 1 championship leader Nico Rosberg in the final stage of qualifying in Montreal.

Mercedes entered qualifying anticipating a challenge for pole from Red Bull and Ferrari after a closely-contested trio of practice sessions.

However, both Hamilton and Rosberg were able to stretch the legs of the W07 Hybrid car to pull clear of the field and secure a front-row lock-out for Mercedes.

Hamilton became the first man to dip under the 1:13 mark with his first run in Q3, setting a time of 1:12.812 to edge out Rosberg by just 0.062 seconds.

Both drivers headed out for a second run, but neither could improve as the checkered flag fell, Rosberg’s hopes of pole dashed by a mistake at the first corner.

This left Hamilton to claim his fifth pole position at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and head up a front-row lock-out for Mercedes in Canada.

Sebastian Vettel led Ferrari’s charge, improving late on to qualify third and just 0.178 seconds off Hamilton at the front, suggesting that the upgrades brought by Ferrari to Canada are indeed working as the team has asserted.

Vettel was followed by Red Bull pair of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen, both of whom struggled to replicate their practice pace in the final fight for pole. Vettel’s Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen finished sixth despite completing just a single run in Q3.

Williams was unable to fight with the front there teams once again as Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa qualified seventh and eighth respectively.

McLaren impressed once again as Fernando Alonso made his way into Q3. The Spaniard ended the final session in P10. Teammate Jenson Button fell two-tenths of a second short with his final lap, leaving him to settle for 12th on the grid.

After finishing on the podium in Monaco, Sergio Perez came back down to earth after being eliminated by Force India teammate Nico Hulkenberg in the dying moments of Q2. Hulkenberg ultimately qualified ninth, while Perez had to settle for P11 on the grid.

Daniil Kvyat led Toro Rosso’s charge, qualifying 13th, but teammate Carlos Sainz Jr. was left down in 16th place after crashing out early in the session. Sainz clipped the infamous Wall of Champions with his right-rear wheel when starting a flying lap, causing him to crash and leave his car with heavy damage, warranting a red flag stoppage.

Esteban Gutierrez outqualified Haas teammate Romain Grosjean for the second time this season on Saturday afternoon finishing 14th. Grosjean was left to settle for P15, finishing half a second adrift of a place in Q3.

Renault’s difficult start to the season continued as Jolyon Palmer qualified down in 17th place, but was fortunate to finish the session after two close scrapes with the wall. Teammate Kevin Magnussen took no part in qualifying due to crash damage on his car from FP3, resigning him to a probable start from the pit lane on Sunday.

Pascal Wehrlein looked set to make his way into Q2 for Manor, only for light rain and a yellow flag shown for teammate Rio Haryanto’s crash to deny him a chance to make a late improvement. The German was left to settle for P18, while Haryanto ended the session 21st, the duo split by the Saubers of Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr.

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