Lewis Hamilton beat the Mercedes teammate, Valtteri Bottas, to get the starting right on the Mugello track, Ferrari’s home ground.
The 1-minute 15,144-second achievement performed by Hamilton in the classification round on September 12 was only faster than Bottas’s performance of 0.059 seconds. Red Bull Max Verstappen racer was far behind 0.35 seconds, but still easily took the right to start third, just ahead of teammate Alexander Albon.
Meanwhile, the fifth place in the home qualifying round is considered an encouraging result for Charles Leclerc in the context of his Ferrari having many difficulties in the 1000 race. The remaining member of Ferrari, Sebastian Vettel is only starting 14th.
Engine power, experience were promoted at the right time and luckily helped Hamilton achieve the highest ranking achievement on the Mugello race, Scarperia e San Piero, Italy on September 12.
Bottas soon proved to be a fierce competitor to Hamilton at Mugello by leading all three test runs. In the qualifying round, the Finnish driver of the Mercedes team continued to play on par with Hamilton.
Bottas was 0.029 seconds faster than his teammate in the first qualifying round (Q1). In Q2, Hamilton regained his original position when he outperformed Bottas by 0.013 seconds. By the first turn of Q3, the British driver continued to widen the gap when he appeared first on the track and achieved 1 minute 15,144 seconds.
Bottas followed suit, but only managed 1 minute 15,203 seconds, 0.059 seconds behind Hamilton. Verstappen ran after the Mercedes team in the first run and only achieved 1 minute 15,546 seconds.
The second run of Q3
In the second run of Q3, Hamilton continued to be early on the track, but he did not improve his performance, only achieving 1 minute 15.318 seconds of results. Verstappen raised the record to 1 minute 15,509 seconds but not enough to surpass the Mercedes duo.
Running was almost the last, but Bottas could not beat his teammates when Esteban Ocon (Renault) drives away caused the yellow flag to be raised. The cars had to slow down, so the Finnish driver could not pass the first run.
Before the Mugello race, Leclerc predicted Ferrari would not be as inferior as the previous two races at Spa-Francorchamps and Monza. However, the Monaco driver probably did not dare to think of him starting fifth, after only four cars from Mercedes and Red Bull. In contrast, teammate Vettel still dived at the bottom of the middle group and was 0.534 seconds slower than Leclerc.