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Live Reporting

Michael Emons

All times stated are UK

  1. Thanks and goodbye

    That's all for this live page today. Thanks for joining us.

    We'll be back at 12:30 BST on Sunday with all the build-up to the race, which starts at 14:00.

    Lewis Hamilton begins at the front, with the Red Bulls second and third.

    Hope you can join us then. Goodbye for now.

  2. Hamilton beats Perez to Imola pole - read the report

    Andrew Benson

    BBC Sport’s chief F1 writer

    Lewis Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton took pole position ahead of Red Bull's Sergio Perez in a thrilling qualifying session at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

    Hamilton was just 0.035 seconds clear in the Mercedes as Perez beat team-mate Max Verstappen in only the Mexican's second race for Red Bull.

    Charles Leclerc put the Ferrari fourth, while Valtteri Bottas was only eighth in the second Mercedes. Lando Norris went second fastest in the McLaren but had his lap time deleted for exceeding track limits and was seventh.

    It was a bitter blow for the Englishman, who had looked fast all session and appeared to have a chance of qualifying among the Mercedes and Red Bulls.

    He was no more than a foot outside the track at the fast Piratella left-hander, where countless drivers have had lap times deleted through the weekend.

    And while Hamilton being on pole might appear commonplace, it was a clear surprise to the Mercedes team judging by the exchange he had with race engineer Peter Bonnington on team radio afterwards, as both expressed incredulity at beating the Red Bulls.

  3. 'It was a bit messy'

    Red Bull's Max Verstappen, who qualified in third: "Not so good in Q3. I went off at Turn Three, so a bit messy, not a good lap.

    "You can't be good every time, so we'll see what went wrong - but it's definitely not the easiest in Q3. It's still P3, which is a good starting position.

    It's going to be interesting. We have the two cars on the different tyres and we will try and make it difficult for them."

  4. 'I should've been on pole'

    Red Bull's Sergio Perez, who starts second tomorrow, says: "Yesterday I did a mistake and made them [the team] work hard and the most important thing is we showed progress. I never expected to be here today.

    "I've been improving, P2, but I should've been on pole and I did a mistake on the final corner.

    "Everything is positive and we have to make sure we keep progressing and tomorrow is when it matters.

    "We're on a different [tyre] strategy to Max and it will be interesting to see what we can do. The important thing is we get those points and that learning."

  5. 'I love the challenge'

    Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton, who starts on pole position for the 99th time in his career: "Today has been great. I definitely didn't expect us to be ahead of two Red Bulls.

    "They were quick but the car was already feeling quick this weekend. Respect to the team for their hard work to narrow down the window.

    "I love the challenge. I love having the two Red Bulls there. It's going to make strategy harder and make it a real challenge because they have great race pace.

    "I'm so happy because the first lap was really good, really clean. The second wasn't as good as the first but I'm really grateful. I came around the last corner and heard that I got the pole and was super grateful."

  6. Post update

    Right, let's hear what the top three have to say...

  7. How they will start the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

    • 1. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
    • 2. Sergio Perez (Red Bull)
    • 3. Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
    • 4. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
    • 5. Pierre Gasly (Alpha Tauri)
    • 6. Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren)
    • 7. Lando Norris (McLaren)
    • 8. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
    • 9. Esteban Ocon (Alpine)
    • 10. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin)
    • 11. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari)
    • 12. George Russell (Williams)
    • 13. Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin)
    • 14. Nicholas Latifi (Williams)
    • 15. Fernando Alonso (Alpine)
    • 16. Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo)
    • 17. Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo)
    • 18. Mick Schumacher (Haas)
    • 19. Nikita Mazepin (Haas)
    • 20. Yuki Tsunoda (Alpha Tauri, no time)
  8. Post update

    Jolyon Palmer

    Former Renault driver on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    This justifies Red Bull's decision to put Sergio Perez in the car and change things up.

    We never saw Alex Albon getting close to Max Verstappen - never mind beating him.

    Red Bull have a second driver that can be there when Verstappen isn't.

  9. Post update

    Lando Norris would have been on the front row, but that breach of track limits, for going wide at Turn 9, and that takes him from second to seventh. Tight margins, but from front row to row four.

  10. Post update

    Jolyon Palmer

    Former Renault driver on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    Wow, wow, wow!

    Who's had a similar shocker to Bottas? It's Lando! He would've been on the front row had his lap time not been deleted.

    What a session!

  11. BreakingLewis Hamilton starts on pole position for the Emilia Romagna GP

    So, so close. Only one tenth separates the top three.

    Lewis Hamilton is on pole for the 99th time in his career. Sergio Perez is second alongside him on the front row, Max Verstappen is third.

    Charles Leclerc fourth, Pierre Gasly fifth, Daniel Ricciardo sixth, Lando Norris seventh, Valtteri Bottas eighth, Esteban Ocon ninth, Lance Stroll 10th.

  12. Post update

    Perez up to second. He's on the front row. Verstappen third.

  13. Post update

    Lando Norris was heading towards the front row, but no, lap time deleted for track limits. He's going to fall all the way back down to seventh.

  14. Post update

    Ricciardo improves.

  15. Post update

    Bottas a long way off. No pole for him. He can only advance one spot up to fifth.

  16. 'Bottas has work to do'

    Jolyon Palmer

    Former Renault driver on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    Valtteri Bottas has got a huge amount of work to do to get back in the front two. He's got the pace - we've seen that countless times - but he's only got one lap to make the deficit up.

    He can’t go over track limits, he has to put all the corners together with no lock up, no big snap of oversteer. He has to get everything right to try and get past Sergio Perez.

  17. Post update

    Red Bull will be pleased with Sergio Perez's efforts so far. They are second and third at the moment.

  18. Post update

    No time from Lance Stroll in Q3 so he's heading for 10th as it stands. Ricciardo ninth, Ocon eighth and Gasly seventh, with everyone getting ready for their second runs. Four minutes left.

  19. Post update

    Max Verstappen has four pole positions to his name. He needs to find only one tenth to make it five.

  20. Post update

    Jolyon Palmer

    Former Renault driver on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    Perfect job from Sergio Perez. It's Valtteri Bottas that's the loser of the big two teams.

    He made a mess of that lap. Perez, though, marvellous job. That is what Red Bull have been looking for.