And welcome to our coverage for the season-opening 2019 Australian Grand Prix. Much to almost everyone’s surprise, Mercedes absolutely bossed qualifying yesterday, securing a front row lock-out. Lewis Hamilton once more found pace when he needed it at the very last, edging out his team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who had held top spot after the first runs in final qualifying. But the five-time champion was just too good.
Ferrari, who many expected to be the leaders coming into the first grand prix were some way behind. Sebastian Vettel was a distant third, some seven-tenths behind Hamilton’s time and new boy Charles Leclerc a further three tenths behind, split by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.
Elsewhere Romain Grosjean – and more generally his Haas team – was best of the rest, lining up in sixth place ahead of Kevin Magnussen, his team-mate. Lando Norris, on his grand prix debut, took a superb eighth for McLaren, with Kimi Raikkonen and Sergio Perez rounding off the top 10.