Verstappen wins Silverstone Sprint for British GP pole | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

Verstappen wins Silverstone Sprint for British GP pole

AFP | London

The Daily Tribune –

Max Verstappen took pole position for the British Grand Prix and made Formula One history by winning the sport’s first yesterday sprint race to stretch his lead over Lewis Hamilton to 33 points. Seven times world champion Hamilton will start alongside his Dutch rival in Sunday’s Grand Prix after finishing second for Mercedes in a 17-lap qualifying race that lasted just over half an hour. The winner took three points, with two for the runner-up and one for third place.

Hamilton’s teammate Valtteri Bottas finished third in a race to provide more thrills over the three days of track action and potentially shake up the starting grid.

“We had a good start and a good fight with Lewis on the first lap and then we tried to do our own pace. You could see we were pushing each other hard because at the end of the race the tyres were blistering a lot,” said Verstappen. “In the end, I’m happy of course to have got those three points -- it sounds a bit funny to then hear you scored a pole position. But anyway we’ll take it. It should be a really exciting battle tomorrow.”

The top three were taken by truck for a parade lap around the circuit instead of the usual post-race podium celebrations, with no champagne spraying but the winner garlanded with an old-style laurel wreath. The pole was a fourth in a row for Verstappen, who will be chasing his sixth win of the season and fourth in succession on Sunday.

Hamilton had qualified at the front of the grid on Friday, with Verstappen alongside, but lost out at the start and it was immediately game over. Despite flames flickering from the front brakes, the Red Bull proved too quick for the Mercedes to catch with a 1.430-second gap at the finish.