Provisional US Grand Prix grid

F1 using 'overtaking sim' to design future tracks

F1 using 'overtaking sim' to design future tracks

Lewis Hamilton will start Sunday’s US Grand Prix from pole position with title rival Sebastian Vettel fifth on the grid.

This weekend Hamilton could wrap up title number five, all he needs to do is out-score Vettel by eight points or more.

The Mercedes driver was given a helping hand by the German, who earned himself a three-place grid penalty for failing to slow sufficiently for red flags in FP1 on Friday.

Behind them Max Verstappen could offer the race’s excitement as he tries to race from 18th on the grid to the podium.

The Dutchman qualified P15 after breaking his suspension on the ‘Verstopper’ kerbs and was due to start two places higher due to penalties for the Toro Rosso drivers. However, Red Bull have also opted to fit a new gearbox to the Dutchman’s car, resulting in a five place-grid drop.

Both Pierre Gasly and Brendon Hartley have engine penalties.

The provisional grid
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:32.237
2 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 0.070s
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 0.379s
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 1.257s
5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 0.061s *
6 Esteban Ocon Force India 1.908s
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1.978s
8 Romain Grosjean Haas 2.013s
9 Charles Leclerc Sauber 2.183s
10 Sergio Perez Force India 2.357s
11 Carlos Sainz Renault 1:34.566
12 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:34.732
13 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1:35.294
14 Sergey Sirotkin Williams 1:35.362
15 Lance Stroll Williams 1:35.480
16 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1:35.536
17 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren 1:35.735
18 Max Verstappen Red Bull no time set****
19 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso no time set **
20 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso no time set ***

* penalised three places for failing to slow sufficiently for red flags in FP1
** additional power unit elements
*** additional power unit elements, new gearbox
****new gearbox