Hamilton crashes out on first qualifying lap, Bottas on pole
The new world champion didn't get far in qualifying. Lucky for him the title's already safe.
Lewis Hamilton will start the Brazilian Grand Prix from the rear of the grid after crashing on his first qualifying lap.
The Mercedes driver lost his car mid way around the track and made hefty contact with the barriers. Hamilton was unhurt, but damage to the suspension meant his session was over. A red flag was thrown to clear up the accident scene.
Rain had fallen on the Interlagos circuit in the hour before the session, potentially leaving the track slick. Hamilton was one of the first drivers to run in qualifying and seemed to be taken completely unawares.
Hamilton will start last, having set no time.
REJUVENATED BOTTAS SNATCHES POLE
Hamilton had been favourite to take pole having shown impressive pace in practice. With the Mercedes driver eliminated from proceedings, the remaining Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari duo Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen were left to scrap over top spot.
In Q3 Vettel edged the Mercedes driver by just 0.082 seconds, with Kimi close to half a second back in third.
But Bottas responded with a brilliant final run, beating Vettel by a mere 0.038s. Raikkonen also improved, but remained P3.
It marks a return to form for Bottas, who has struggled to match Hamilton's pace since the summer break. A strong result in Brazil could prove vital heading into the winter.
Hamilton was quick to congratulate his teammate after the session. (Sutton Images)
The two Red Bulls were next with Verstappen leading Ricciardo, though the Aussie faces a 10-place grid penalty. Next up was Sergio Perez, followed by an extremely satisfied Fernando Alonso. The McLaren driver will start in P6, his best grid slot of 2017.
Here's how the session ended, though a number of drivers will take grid penalties.
Join us tomorrow for live F1 chat throughout the Brazilian Grand Prix