BUDAPEST, Hungary — Lewis Hamilton beat Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas on Saturday to take pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
It was Hamilton’s second straight pole this season and record-extending 90th of his Formula One career.
“I just have to pinch myself, it doesn’t register,” Hamilton said. “Valtteri never makes it easy for me. He kept the pressure on.”
Hamilton has won seven times at the Hungaroring, and the veteran British driver needs one more to equal F1 great Michael Schumacher’s single-track record of eight victories when the French GP was held at Magny-Cours.
A 90th pole position in F1 🙇♂️
A 7th pole position in Hungary 👏
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 18, 2020
He was 0.107 seconds quicker than Bottas and 0.93 faster than Racing Point driver Lance Stroll.
“The car was on fire today … I’m going to try and get some big points tomorrow,” said an exuberant Stroll, whose teammate Sergio Perez was fourth.
Racing Point uses Mercedes engines and is looking quicker than Ferrari, which is falling behind. Four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel and teammate Charles Leclerc were fifth and sixth – both around 1.3 slower than Hamilton – who was beaten 7-5 for poles by Leclerc last year.
Max Verstappen starts seventh on Sunday for Red Bull ahead of McLaren’s Lando Norris.
Earlier, Bottas led Hamilton by 0.042 seconds in overcast conditions for the third and final practice.
Bottas won the season-opening Austrian GP, and six-time F1 champion Hamilton clinched the Styrian GP the following week in Austria after a brilliant pole position in teeming rain.