By Alberto Frammartino, July 30, 2022
Mercedes man of the moment George Russell secured his first career pole position in qualifying for the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix. It was a totally unexpected result because the Mercedes has lacked pace from the start of the first race of the season let alone from Friday’s practice onwards in Hungary. After a lot of head scratching and a late night spent with more head-scratching sessions, Mercedes wearily got on with the job in the build-up to qualifying.
A Mercedes on pole position in 2022 looked out of the question from the very first race. However, a recent upturn in form meant 4th and 5th looked like an outside bet, a few tenths behind the leading pack of Ferrari and Red Bull. Mercedes have experienced a torrid first half of the season suffering all manner of issues with the car. Notably, the team experienced the worst of porpoising.
So considering just how badly Mercedes started the season, enduring some tough and humiliating form, for George Russell to bag pole position for the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix is nothing short of a miracle. OK, maybe it’s over the top to say it was a miracle, let’s just say the data analysis and revisions made have netted a healthy return.
Russell secured pole ahead of the Ferraris of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc. Max Verstappen suffered a reliability issue and could only muster 10th on the grid in his Red Bull. Russell’s teammate Lewis Hamilton suffered a DRS issue and had to abort his final flying lap. So, Russell gets his first career pole, but as I always say Sunday is where the real work begins and where the points are won or lost.
2022 Hungarian Grand Prix Qualifying Results:
1 George Russell Mercedes 1:17.377
2 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 0.044s
3 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 0.190s
4 Lando Norris McLaren 0.392s
5 Esteban Ocon Alpine 0.641s
6 Fernando Alonso Alpine 0.701s
7 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 0.765s
8 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Racing 0.780s
9 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 1.002s
10 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1.446s
11 Sergio Perez Red Bull 1:18.516
12 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo Racing 0.057s
13 Kevin Magnussen Haas 0.309s
14 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 0.621s
15 Mick Schumacher Haas 0.686s
16 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:19.240
17 Alex Albon Williams 0.016s
18 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 0.033s
19 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 0.287s
20 Nicholas Latifi Williams 0.330s