Bottas beats Hamilton to take pole position at Bahrain GP

first_img“I feel I’m now in the game,” he said.Bottas left Williams to join Mercedes this season as an emergency replacement for German driver Nico Rosberg — Keke Rosberg’s son — who quit F1 just days after winning the title last year. Bottas has 10 podiums with a best finish of second.Moments after they had climbed out of their cars, Hamilton grabbed Bottas, hugged him and shook him firmly by the hand.“Valtteri found some great pace,” Hamilton said.Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was fourth, with Ferrari’s Raikkonen fifth ahead of Max Verstappen’s Red Bull.Although not as hot as Friday, drivers still had to deal with afternoon track temperatures of 37 degrees Celsius (99 degrees Fahrenheit) during P3. By the evening, the heat had dropped off to a more comfortable 30 C (86 F) — similar conditions to Sunday’s race, which starts at dusk and ends under floodlights.Hamilton and Vettel are level at the top of the championship standings. In an exciting start to the season, both have one win and one second-placed finish each, with Vettel winning in Melbourne and Hamilton responding in Shanghai.“It’s great how close it is between the teams, it brings out the best in each driver,” Hamilton said. “The more drivers you have in the mix, the more intense it gets.”Hamilton won in Bahrain in 2014 and 2015, on his way to his second and third world titles with Mercedes. Vettel won in 2012 and 2013 during a glittering run of four straight titles with Red Bull.Five drivers are eliminated from the first two parts of qualifying — Q3 and Q2 — to leave the best 10 in Q1. Hamilton topped Q3 and Q2. Presidency bid needs ‘deep reflection’ – Sara Duterte MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Dozens wounded as Iraqi protesters up pressure on government “It took a few races, but hopefully it’s the first of many,” said Bottas, who is competing in his 80th F1 race but only his third with Mercedes. “I’m getting better with the set-up of the car. Feeling more comfortable.”Bottas became the first Finnish driver to take pole since Heikki Kovalainen at the British GP in 2008 — the race after Kimi Raikkonen’s pole at the French GP — and the fifth overall. Keke Rosberg and Mika Hakkinen also qualified first during their careers.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return“It’s a lot of races without a Finn on pole,” Bottas said.Bottas also denied Hamilton his 64th pole. Palace: Crisis over ABC-CBN franchise unlikely Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town Canadian military mobilized to help Newfoundland dig out Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany, Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland and Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain, from left to right, pose after the qualifying session for the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix, at the Formula One Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir, Bahrain. APSAKHIR, Bahrain — Valtteri Bottas beat Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton right at the end of qualifying on Saturday (Sunday Manila time) to take pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix. It was the first pole in Bottas’ career.Hamilton took pole in the first two races of the season, and had the leading time until Bottas beat him on the last lap.ADVERTISEMENT Spurs uses improved mentality to chase Chelsea for PL title On the edge of America, census begins in a tiny Alaska towncenter_img “It was definitely possible to be a bit further forward,” Verstappen said. “But last time I started a bit further behind and ended on the podium so anything is possible.” In a boost for Renault, both drivers made the top 10, with German Nico Hulkenberg seventh and Briton Jolyon Palmer 10th.But McLaren’s frustrations continued.The team struggled last year after switching back to Honda engines and it looks like things are getting worse. Fernando Alonso and teammate Stoffel Vandoorne have not scored a point yet.Alonso, a two-time world champion, did not even make it into Q2 after his engine’s power unit broke down. He will start from 15th and needs a new engine for the race.“It’s a shame,” the Spanish driver said.Vandoorne starts from 17th, making it unlikely that McLaren will get in the points here.Carlos Sainz Jr. had shown good speed during practice, but qualified 16th as his Toro Rosso was hit by a power failure late in Q1.In the third and final practice, Verstappen narrowly beat Hamilton — but the 19-year-old Dutchman could not carry that into qualifying.Still, starting from sixth on the grid will not faze him.Last weekend, Verstappen started from 16th on the grid and finished third. Panelo: Duterte only wants to emulate strong political will of Marcos SpaceX launches, destroys rocket in astronaut escape test Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next More Taal volcanic quakes recorded despite weaker eruptions LATEST STORIES “That’s how close qualifying should always be, it forces us to be on the limit,” said Hamilton, who had taken pole in Bahrain for the past two years. “I’m genuinely happy with the job I did.”Bottas clocked a leading time of 1 minute, 28.769 seconds over the 5.4-kilometer (3.3-mile) track in Sakhir, compared to 1:28.792 for Hamilton.Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was a bit disappointed with third.“I crossed the line, looked up and saw both were ahead,” said Vettel. “When I got the time I was a bit down to be honest. Four tenths was a lot more than I expected, given how good the lap felt.”The 27-year-old Bottas will now aim for his first win.ADVERTISEMENT View commentslast_img read more

Chelsea SNUBBED as Ajax win race for teenage sensation

first_img1 Teen star Szabolcs Schon has snubbed Chelsea in favour of a move to Ajax, according to reports in Holland.The 16-year-old has been turning heads for Hungarian side Budapest Honved and he has been tipped for a big future in the game.Chelsea reportedly took the midfielder on trial in the summer and he impressed enough that they wanted to sign him during the January transfer window.However, according to De Telegraaf, Schon has rejected an offer from the Blues and will join Ajax instead.The Hungarian teenager is said to have been tempted by the Blues’ offer but Ajax’s promise of greater involvement with the first team swung his decision. Szabolcs Schon [centre] celebrates scoring for Hungary Under-17s last_img