Sport F1 2020: Hamilton survives Sochi scare to claim pole in Russia
10 things we learned from the 2020 Russian Grand Prix
While a pre-race mistake dominated the Russian Grand Prix post-race reaction, Sochi delivered a few major developments in the 2020 Formula 1 world championship. LUKE SMITH pinpoints the top talking points Following a brutal run of three triple-headers to start the 2020 Formula 1 season, the paddock ventured to Sochi last weekend for its first standalone event of the year.The Russian Grand Prix has rarely been a memorable race through its seven-year history, and the 2020 running wasn't much of an exception as a pre-race penalty overshadowed the race.
Lewis Hamilton boosted his chances of claiming a record-equalling race win at the Russian Grand Prix as he secured pole position in Sochi.
The Mercedes driver triumphed last time out at the Tuscan Grand Prix in Mugello to take his career tally of Formula One victories to 90, just one behind the legendary Michael Schumacher's haul.
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Championship leader Hamilton appears right on course to match Schumacher on Sunday now after smashing the track record, albeit only after coming through a dramatic session that so nearly saw him miss out on Q3, followed by a nervy trip to see the race stewards.
A spin for Sebastian Vettel led to a red flag in the closing minutes, forcing Hamilton to contend with traffic as he looked to cross the line upon the restart in time to get one more lap in.
The Briton duly managed it, despite a brief trip off the track, then rose from fourth at the end of Q2 to finish comfortably quickest, producing a fastest lap of 1:31.304.
However, Hamilton's position was put into doubt when he was one of four drivers to be summoned to see the stewards for failing to return to the track in the correct manner.
F1 2020: Dominant Hamilton can equal Schumacher wins record in Sochi
If he can earn a fifth win in Russia, Lewis Hamilton will match Michael Schumacher's career total of 91 F1 wins.The Mercedes driver, who is dominating the 2020 drivers' championship as he holds a 55-point lead over team-mate Valtteri Bottas, is on 90 career wins.
BREAKING:takes pole at Sochi!
The reigning world champion takes the 96th pole of his F1 career, ahead of Max Verstappen (P2) and Valtteri Bottas (P3)— Formula 1 (@F1)
Valtteri Bottas appeared set to start alongside his team-mate but Max Verstappen denied Mercedes an eighth successive front-row lockout, the Red Bull driver snatching second place.
Sergio Perez produced an impressive Q3 performance to take fourth place, while Daniel Ricciardo and Carlos Sainz will start on the third row of the grid.
Esteban Ocon and Lando Norris ended up seventh and eighth respectively, ahead of the AlphaTauri of Pierre Gasly. Alex Albon in the second Red Bull rounded out the provisional top 10, subject to Hamilton's hearing with the officials.
1. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 1:31.304
2. Max Verstappen (Red Bull) +0.563s
F1 drivers warned over touring and track limits at Sochi
Formula 1 race director Michael Masi has issued warnings to drivers over track limits and backing up in qualifying ahead of this weekend's Russian Grand PrixF1 will return to the Sochi Autodrom this weekend after recent issues with drivers going too slowly on cool-down laps in practice and qualifying at a number of races.
3. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) +0.652s
4. Sergio Perez (Racing Point) +1.013s
5. Daniel Ricciardo (Renault) +1.060s
6. Carlos Sainz (McLaren) +1.246s
7. Esteban Ocon (Renault) +1.320s
8. Lando Norris (McLaren) +1.543s
9. Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri) +1.696s
10. Alex Albon (Red Bull) +1.704s
Video: Lewis Hamilton's F1 career in numbers (The Independent)
Hamilton conjures up after qualifying scare - Ferrari again desolate .
Lewis Hamilton retires in Sochi almost prematurely - in the end the world champion races back to the pole. Ferrari has no chance again - Vettel crashes. © Provided by sport1.de Hamilton conjures up after qualifying scare - Ferrari desolate again Lewis Hamilton has taken pole position for the Russian Grand Prix with a new course record. The world champion in the Mercedes cockpit left Max Verstappen (Red Bull) and his team-mate Valtteri Bottas behind in Sochi's qualifying.