Published: Sun, April 14, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Bottas denies Hamilton pole in Shanghai

Bottas denies Hamilton pole in Shanghai

Both Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton lock out the front row for the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday, with championship leader Bottas capturing pole position ahead of his team-mate.

While the youngster's frustrations were perhaps understandable, defending World Champion Lewis Hamilton was having none of it, and gave a one-word reply that summed up his feelings towards Max and the alleged rule he spoke of.

"The lap was ok, not completely how I wanted it but it was good enough for pole and the vehicle has been good enough this weekend and Lewis has improved today too". "Luckily it was good enough for pole", smiled the Finn, who pipped Hamilton by 0.023 seconds after setting a best time of one minute 31.547.

He was later given the all-clear, but missed qualifying because his ruined auto could not be fixed in time.

"I was obviously pushing trying to find the limits, but it should have been in qualifying rather than FP3".

"The vehicle has been really good this weekend, and Lewis also improved a lot in qualifying, it was super close", said the Finn Bottas.

"Valtteri has been stellar all weekend".

"To be as close as we are at the end is fantastic".

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Ferrari arrived in China as favourites after looking dominant in Bahrain, a race they would have won but for a late engine problem that hit Charles Leclerc's vehicle while leading, and with plenty of straight line speed.

The Finn had a close call with team mate Antonio Giovinazzi with Raikkonen accusing the Italian of nearly hitting him on objective over the team-radio.

Controversially, the two Red Bull drivers failed to set a second attempt in the final session of qualifying after being backed up by the Mercedes, Ferraris and Renaults ahead of them on the track. "There was a little bit more time left on the table there but that's cool, I'll try and get it tomorrow", added Hamilton. "It's annoying because we could have fought for third today".

Alexander Albon has explained the circumstances which lead to his crash in the third free practice session for the Chinese Grand Prix, admitting full responsibility for the incident which cost him his place in qualifying on Saturday, meaning he will start from the back on the grid. "We had a good chance of being in Q3 (the top 10 shootout)".

"I am OK. More angry and disappointed than anything else".

"We have fortunately very safe cars", the Austrian explained in the immediate aftermath of the accident.

There's bundles of stuff to get through before we're lights out so I'll curtail this preamble and start sending through plenty of goodies to whet the appetite. "It was a big one and silly one", said Albon.

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