But heading into Qualifying, it would seem that Mercedes and Ferrari are looking like the teams to beat heading into the session that look set to gain Pole Position ahead of the race on Sunday. But McLaren, Toro Rosso or Force India may spring a surprise and throw a spanner into the works based on their early pace and promise within the Practice sessions.
Let the battle for Pole Position begin…
In Q1, Nico Rosberg tops the timesheets with a time of 1.23.002, Lewis Hamilton was second, Max Verstappen was third, Daniel Ricciardo was fourth and Kimi Raikkonen was fifth. Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas, Nico Hulkenberg, Carlos Sainz Jr and Fernando Alosno managed to get 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th places for their teams. At the end of Q1, we lose Jolyon Palmer, Felipe Massa, Marcus Ericsson, Felipe Nasr, Pascal Wehrlein and Rio Haryanto.
In Q2, Hamilton tops the timesheets with a time of 1.22.159, Rosberg was second, Verstappen was third, Raikkonen was fourth and Vettel was fifth. Ricciardo, Perez, Bottas, Sainz Jr and Alonso managed to get 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th places for their teams. At the end of Q2, we lose Nico Hulkenberg, Jenson Button, Daniil Kvyat, Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen and Esteban Gutierrez.
In Q3, Hamilton tops the timesheets and claims his first Pole Position of the season at the Spanish GP with a time of 1.22.000, Rosberg was second and was 0.280 seconds behind Hamilton, Ricciardo was third and was 0.680 seconds behind Hamilton. Verstappen was fourth 1.087 seconds behind, Raikkonen was fifth 1.113 seconds behind, Vettel was sixth 1.334 seconds behind, Bottas was seventh 1.522 seconds behind, Sainz Jr was in eighth 1.643 seconds behind, Perez was in ninth 1.782 seconds behind and Alonso rounded off the top ten finishers of the session.
It would seem that Mercedes genuinely has the pace to challenge for the race win again this weekend despite their form in Qualifying. Both of the Mercedes drivers seem to have the cars underneath them to do this and have been consistent and fast throughout every session so far this weekend; even if Hamilton has a challenge on his hands to get a result this weekend.
You cannot discount Raikkonen, Vettel or Bottas even to be challenging also for the race win and could also be the dark horses to take the win away from Mercedes (and also Ferrari in Mercedes’ case) that could see gaining some points on their rivals to kick start their Constructors Championship.
Ricciardo, Verstappen, Perez and Sainz Jr could also have a decent race and pick up some much needed points for their respective teams. Will it rain? I do not know. Who will win the Grand Prix on Sunday? I really don’t know.
Let’s see what happens tomorrow on the Barcelona circuit on race day on Sunday…