Sport Hamilton assesses Russian GP strategy as he expects rivals to "come flying by"

13:30  27 september  2020
13:30  27 september  2020 Source:   autosport.com

2020 F1 Russian Grand Prix session timings and preview

  2020 F1 Russian Grand Prix session timings and preview After a week off, Formula 1 returns to action with the Russian Grand Prix at the Sochi Autodrom .Following a dramatic Tuscan GP at Mugello which was halted by two red flags, Lewis Hamilton claimed victory to extend his F1 world championship lead to 55 points over Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas.The Mercedes pair head to Sochi as heavy favourites to continue their domination of the 2020 F1 season with the German manufacturer still undefeated at the circuit since it joined the F1 world championship calendar in 2014.

Lewis Hamilton starts the race in which he could equal the all-time record for grand prix victories from pole position on I genuinely expect one of these two to come flying by at some point." Hamilton has some defence against this because he is starting on the soft tyres, which give the best grip off the

Victory would give Hamilton his seventh win of an already-dominant season that has left his rivals trailing, none of whom have recorded more than one win. Engineer Peter Bonnington urged Hamilton to cross the line before the lap was ended, and he did so in fourth place at the time before blitzing the

a group of parked motorcycles sitting on top of a building: Hamilton assesses Russian GP strategy options © LAT Images Hamilton assesses Russian GP strategy options

Lewis Hamilton says he must consider a creative strategy to defend top spot in the Russian Grand Prix as he will start on the disadvantageous soft tyres.

Hamilton, who was forced into starting on the red-walled softer rubber when both of his opening runs in Q2 were disrupted, is also concerned about being passed on the long run from the grid to the Sochi track's first braking point at Turn 2.

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Hamilton WON'T cry if he equals Schumacher's record 91 wins at the Russian GP . 'NO REGRETS'. Lewis expects rap for 'Arrest cops who killed Breonna' shirt Hamilton was allowed to keep his pole after the race stewards took no further action after an investigation into why he had missed a chicane

Lewis Hamilton took pole position after qualifying for the Russian Grand Prix on Saturday. His problems intensified as he tried to set a lap to make it into Q2 only for Sebastian Vettel to spin and hit the tyre wall to bring about a red flag. Lewis Hamilton flies in fourth, sixth tenths behind Ricciardio.

The distance from the line to the right-hander means Hamilton will be vulnerable to an immediate attack from Red Bull's Max Verstappen and team-mate Valtteri Bottas - particularly if there is a headwind at the start, as that will exacerbate the tow factor - who also have the advantage of starting on the more durable medium rubber.

"It not a good place to start at all and I think this year you're seeing our cars are more draggy and there's more tow this year than we've seen in other years," said Hamilton, after taking his 96th career pole despite nearly failing to set a lap at the end of Q2 following Sebastian Vettel's crash suspending qualifying on Saturday.

"I generally expect one of these two to come flying by at some point. I think I'm just going to focus on my race and just try to run the fastest race I can.

F1 start time: What time does the Russian Grand Prix start?

  F1 start time: What time does the Russian Grand Prix start? Lewis Hamilton claimed his 96th Formula 1 career pole position for the Russian Grand Prix ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen. Here's how and when you can watch the race .In a hectic qualifying at the Sochi Autodrom, Hamilton secured pole position having only just made it into Q3 after seeing his initial Q2 lap deleted for exceeding track limits while a red flag for Sebastian Vettel's crash cut short his second effort.

LEWIS HAMILTON will not break down in tears when he equals legend Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 F1 wins — because he is only interested in titles. The Brit can match the tally at this weekend’s Russian GP in Sochi — a race he has won four times out of six.

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"Obviously I'm on the worst tyre to start on the race but generally it's a good tyre to do an actual start but it doesn't have [the best range].

"It has the biggest degradation, 10 times more than any other tyre, I think it is.

"So that's going to be a struggle. I don't know if that puts me onto a two-stop, I don't know, unlikely because the pitlane is too slow, so I'm just going to have to nurse those tyres as far as I can.

"These guys, if they get by, they're going to be pulling away so going to sit down tonight to try to figure out if there's a different kind of race I can do tomorrow to keep my position."

a man sitting on a boat: Hamilton assesses Russian GP strategy options © LAT Images Hamilton assesses Russian GP strategy options

Verstappen will start alongside Hamilton on the front row after stopping the Mercedes cars from taking the top two spots in qualifying for only the second time in 2020.

It marked a considerable improvement from Red Bull after it had ended Friday practice with the fifth fastest time.

F1 2020: They're trying to stop me - Hamilton hits out after 'ridiculous' penalties

  F1 2020: They're trying to stop me - Hamilton hits out after 'ridiculous' penalties After being punished by stewards for an illegal practice start prior to the Russian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton did not hold back.Championship leader Hamilton was leading the way in Sochi when informed he was to be punished for carrying out a practice start outside the designated area before the race.

Lewis Hamilton stands by Mercedes’ decision to manufacture his controversial win in Russia that took him The strategy error provoked a furious reaction from Wolff, who smashed his first on a table as he watched on from the Mercedes’ garage. And here comes Hamilton to win the Russia Grand Prix!

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Verstappen said was it had been a "messy" opening day that was down to the team "trying downforce levels and we never really had a perfect lap".

He added: "There were always a few moments and stuff so I knew that we were going to be, let's say, more competitive than where we were, but it's a surprise to be on the front row.

"But I honestly don't expect it to be like Silverstone [where Verstappen won the 70th Anniversary GP].

"I think we were a little bit more competitive in the long runs there and also the [tyre] compounds, I don't think it's as big an issue as what it was there, so I don't expect the same to happen.

"But I'm just happy with the improvements we did make overnight [from Friday].

"Even at the beginning of qualifying it looked quite tricky to be P3 but it was more because I think we just didn't really find a good balance an issue because of the wind change.

"It seemed like it was very difficult for me to find rear grip in some corners but in Q3 we made a few changes and it seemed to work a bit better so yeah, I was pleased for that."

Video: Lewis Hamilton's F1 career in numbers (The Independent)

10 things we learned from the 2020 Russian Grand Prix

  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.

Lap-by-lap report: Lewis Hamilton won the inaugural Russian GP , and Nico Rosberg finished in Course he is, flanked by six or seven Russian girls. British national anthem plays out as Hamilton and Mercedes pick up their respective trophies. It’s still unclear what Mercedes’ strategy will be here

Hamilton was well over a second clear of all his rivals from Ferrari and Red Bull as he edged out team-mate Valtteri Bottas despite running the hard compound 'I think it is going to be a lot closer': Lewis Hamilton brushes off dominant Hungarian Grand Prix practice pace by claiming he expects rivals to

Stewart: F1 titles and wins don't put Hamilton on level of Clark, Fangio .
Formula 1 wins and titles alone don't put Lewis Hamilton on the same level as the likes of Juan Manuel Fangio or Jim Clark, according to Sir Jackie Stewart . © LAT Images Stewart: Stats don't make Hamilton greatest driver Hamilton is poised to break or equal records for both wins and titles this year, the Mercedes star currently on 90 race victories, one shy of Michael Schumacher's benchmark.He's also on course to equal Schumacher's haul of seven titles, leaving the door wide open for Hamilton to become the standalone record holder in both categories by the end of the current regulations.

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