United States Grand Prix Live

United States Grand Prix Live Stream  ; Lewis Hamilton looks a racing certainty to seize his sixth Formula One world title here at the Circuit of the Americas on Sunday, despite an unusually ragged qualifying session that leaves him only fifth on the grid.

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Valtteri Bottas, his Mercedes team-mate and the only man who can still delay his championship coronation, secured pole position with a stunningly quick lap – the fastest ever recorded at this twisting Texas track – but the result was largely academic. Even if the Finn goes on to win, Hamilton needs to finish only eighth to be sure of the championship.

In another luminous season for Hamilton, featuring 10 wins and counting, his one struggle has been to construct the perfect flying lap. In 19 race weekends, he has taken pole just four times, a strange aberration by his standards. This latest effort was not without drama, as Max Verstappen angrily lashed out at his driving over the in-car radio.

As they gathered behind Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat, heading three abreast into a corner, the Dutchman found himself squeezed into the corner, shouting: “It’s his f—— fault, this.”

Verstappen explained: “We were all lining up to do our lap. I had Daniil in front of me. Lewis just drove by like nobody was there, like he didn’t care. I thought, ‘If you don’t care, well I don’t care.’”

Hamilton’s one priority for Sunday, in trying to wrap up a sixth championship that would take him within one of Michael Schumacher’s record, is to stay out of trouble. That could be easier said than done from the third row, where he will have to weave his way through traffic on the steep run-up to the first corner. The chances of him becoming tangled up, though, are remote, given that he has not finished outside the top 10 all year.

BOSSED IT ✊ #USGP pic.twitter.com/E4UFPyCqgt

— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) November 2, 2019
For Bottas, the odds are arrayed against him. With 78 points left to play for, he trails Hamilton by 74, and is realistically competing purely for pride. But the satisfaction he gleaned from this lap, beating Hamilton’s record from last year by two tenths, was profound.

“I knew how to put it together,” he said, having shaded Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel by 12 thousandths. “I’m glad no one could improve at the end. I’m sure Lewis wants to win the championship in the best possible way. But clearly I’m trying to delay that.”

Surprisingly, Lando Norris finished the first phase of the session on top of the time-sheets, fractionally ahead of Hamilton. Was this a tantalising foretaste of a future all-British front row? Either way, it was a precious moment for McLaren, with whom the 19-year-old has enjoyed an encouraging debut campaign, out-qualifying his more experienced team-mate Carlos Sainz 10-9.

If ever you doubt the need for a far-reaching revamp of Formula One, it is worth studying the example of McLaren. By recent standards, theirs has been a hugely creditable season, with a position of fourth in the constructors’ standings a quantum leap from the dark days of 2017, when they went through the first seven races without scoring a point. They boast lavish investment, immense engineering expertise, not to mention a young, dynamic driver duo in Norris and Sainz. And yet they continue to feel as if they are fighting in a different sport. To their 111 points this year, Mercedes have scored 652.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, gets out of his car after the qualifying session for the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, in Austin, Texas
Lewis Hamilton remains on course to claim his sixth world title at the US Grand Prix but qualified in a disappointing fifth CREDIT: AP
Such a two-tier structure is crying out to be dismantled. Over the past five years, the big three of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull have hoovered up every single race victory between them. A force of the might of McLaren, the second most decorated team in the sport’s history, has been kicked into the long grass.

With Mercedes having wrapped up a sixth straight championship with four races to spare, and Hamilton almost certain to seal his sixth drivers’ title in this weekend’s US Grand Prix, Zak Brown, McLaren’s chief executive, sees little prospect of any change to the order in 2020.

“Next year will just be an evolution of this one,” he said. “I don’t think the grid will look drastically different. Our goal has to be close the gap, but it is too big for us to imagine that we are realistically going to close it by the end of 2020.”

It is against this backdrop that the redrawing of the rules for 2021 is so refreshing. Quite apart from the likelihood of closer racing, with a revised rear-wing concept limiting the effect of turbulent air on the chasing cars, the imposition of a strict budget cap of £135 million on each team promises to level the field. Naturally, agreeing such a figure has involved a blood-fight among those recent spending has exceeded £300 million.

Mercedes have not taken kindly to having their wings clipped, while Ferrari, with their controversial power of veto, still have 48 hours in which they could rip up the regulations altogether.

For now, though, a delicate truce holds. Mercedes and Hamilton will be outstanding favourites for a seventh successive championship double in 2020, but McLaren and Renault – both of whom suggest that they will spend at the limit of their budget caps – are poised to gatecrash the top three in the era that follows.

Lewis Hamilton looks a racing certainty to seize his sixth Formula One world title here at the Circuit of the Americas on Sunday, despite an unusually ragged qualifying session that leaves him only fifth on the grid.

Valtteri Bottas, his Mercedes team-mate and the only man who can still delay his championship coronation, secured pole position with a stunningly quick lap – the fastest ever recorded at this twisting Texas track – but the result was largely academic. Even if the Finn goes on to win, Hamilton needs to finish only eighth to be sure of the championship.

In another luminous season for Hamilton, featuring 10 wins and counting, his one struggle has been to construct the perfect flying lap. In 19 race weekends, he has taken pole just four times, a strange aberration by his standards. This latest effort was not without drama, as Max Verstappen angrily lashed out at his driving over the in-car radio.

As they gathered behind Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat, heading three abreast into a corner, the Dutchman found himself squeezed into the corner, shouting: “It’s his f—— fault, this.”

Verstappen explained: “We were all lining up to do our lap. I had Daniil in front of me. Lewis just drove by like nobody was there, like he didn’t care. I thought, ‘If you don’t care, well I don’t care.’”

Hamilton’s one priority for Sunday, in trying to wrap up a sixth championship that would take him within one of Michael Schumacher’s record, is to stay out of trouble. That could be easier said than done from the third row, where he will have to weave his way through traffic on the steep run-up to the first corner. The chances of him becoming tangled up, though, are remote, given that he has not finished outside the top 10 all year.

BOSSED IT ✊ #USGP pic.twitter.com/E4UFPyCqgt

— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) November 2, 2019
For Bottas, the odds are arrayed against him. With 78 points left to play for, he trails Hamilton by 74, and is realistically competing purely for pride. But the satisfaction he gleaned from this lap, beating Hamilton’s record from last year by two tenths, was profound.

“I knew how to put it together,” he said, having shaded Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel by 12 thousandths. “I’m glad no one could improve at the end. I’m sure Lewis wants to win the championship in the best possible way. But clearly I’m trying to delay that.”

Surprisingly, Lando Norris finished the first phase of the session on top of the time-sheets, fractionally ahead of Hamilton. Was this a tantalising foretaste of a future all-British front row? Either way, it was a precious moment for McLaren, with whom the 19-year-old has enjoyed an encouraging debut campaign, out-qualifying his more experienced team-mate Carlos Sainz 10-9.

If ever you doubt the need for a far-reaching revamp of Formula One, it is worth studying the example of McLaren. By recent standards, theirs has been a hugely creditable season, with a position of fourth in the constructors’ standings a quantum leap from the dark days of 2017, when they went through the first seven races without scoring a point. They boast lavish investment, immense engineering expertise, not to mention a young, dynamic driver duo in Norris and Sainz. And yet they continue to feel as if they are fighting in a different sport. To their 111 points this year, Mercedes have scored 652.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, gets out of his car after the qualifying session for the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, in Austin, Texas
Lewis Hamilton remains on course to claim his sixth world title at the US Grand Prix but qualified in a disappointing fifth CREDIT: AP
Such a two-tier structure is crying out to be dismantled. Over the past five years, the big three of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull have hoovered up every single race victory between them. A force of the might of McLaren, the second most decorated team in the sport’s history, has been kicked into the long grass.

With Mercedes having wrapped up a sixth straight championship with four races to spare, and Hamilton almost certain to seal his sixth drivers’ title in this weekend’s US Grand Prix, Zak Brown, McLaren’s chief executive, sees little prospect of any change to the order in 2020.

“Next year will just be an evolution of this one,” he said. “I don’t think the grid will look drastically different. Our goal has to be close the gap, but it is too big for us to imagine that we are realistically going to close it by the end of 2020.”

It is against this backdrop that the redrawing of the rules for 2021 is so refreshing. Quite apart from the likelihood of closer racing, with a revised rear-wing concept limiting the effect of turbulent air on the chasing cars, the imposition of a strict budget cap of £135 million on each team promises to level the field. Naturally, agreeing such a figure has involved a blood-fight among those recent spending has exceeded £300 million.

Mercedes have not taken kindly to having their wings clipped, while Ferrari, with their controversial power of veto, still have 48 hours in which they could rip up the regulations altogether.

For now, though, a delicate truce holds. Mercedes and Hamilton will be outstanding favourites for a seventh successive championship double in 2020, but McLaren and Renault – both of whom suggest that they will spend at the limit of their budget caps – are poised to gatecrash the top three in the era that follows.

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