F1 2018 Spanish Grand Prix: What we learned from qualifying

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First corner prediction: With Mercedes locking out the front row, Hamilton is the favourite tp lead the pack through Turn 1 but keep an eye out for Sebastian Vettel starting from the clean side of the grid behind the lead Mercedes.

"I was told by the team to stop the auto", Raikkonen said".

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Lewis Hamilton set a track record on Saturday to take pole position for the Spanish Grand Prix.

Valtteri Bottas set the pace with Mercedes in the first practice session for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix.

Red Bull drivers Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo were fifth and sixth, respectively.

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"If it's within one tenth, one tenth and a half you always think maybe, but to be honest I was very happy with the lap until the end".

"I got a decent lap", said Bottas, who was leading in Azerbaijan when a tire blew near the end of the race. "Ferrari were sandbagging until this afternoon and Valtteri has been driving exceptionally well".

However, Bottas vowed to make up for lost time and ensure Mercedes would not let their qualifying positions slip.

"For the race tomorrow and for us as a team, it's the ideal results".

Hamilton took over at the top of the drivers' standings following his lucky victory, when his rivals all crashed or collided, in Baku two weeks ago, but admitted he was struggling for outright speed - a problem he may have done something to rectify with Mercedes upgrades used Friday. "Tomorrow (Sunday) it should be an interesting race". We expected Mercedes to be very strong and so they were.

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Race organizers said additional security was implemented after several cars were broken into at a closed parking lot for the media at the track.

"Everything we bring to the track is delivering the expectations and the lap times we were expecting from them", Alonso said.

Hamilton, the championship leader and defending world champion, had earlier clocked a best lap in one minute and 17.281 seconds, leaving him 0.013sec clear of his Finnish team-mate.

"We're sorry to say that we have experienced a few technical difficulties with F1 TV's live broadcast", F1 said. Obviously we had the change for everyone but I think they are a bit harder, so for me it was pretty straightforward as I said because I was happier with the vehicle with that tyre. Ricciardo almost needed to use supersofts to progress, but the Red Bull driver was just safe as errors from those behind allowed him to back off out of the final corner and avoid a lap time improvement.

The rear of his auto was destroyed by the high-speed impact, both rear wheels and the rear of the gearbox were left hanging by their tethers, but Hartley was unhurt, if severely dazed. The team will likely have to change it for the next race, but no penalties were expected in Spain.

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