Callum Ilott was in sublime form as the recent addition to the Ferrari Driver Academy won the Qualifying Race around the streets of Macau on Saturday, but Lando Norris’ start-line gremlins struck once more to leave him well down the field.
The ten-lap shootout on Saturday determines the grid for Sunday’s Macau Grand Prix, and after getting ahead of Norris at the start, Ilott shadowed polesitter Joel Eriksson for the first few laps before mounting an attack for the lead on lap five around the outside of Lisboa.
That move did not come off, but two laps later, Ilott was ahead after attacking on the inside of Mandarin, with both drivers leaving just enough room for them to battle cleaner. Eriksson attempted to re-pass the SJM Theodore Racing by Prema driver into Lisboa, but was unsuccessful, and that was the last opportunity he had on reclaiming the advantage.
By the end of the lap, Ilott was 2.480 seconds to the good, and at the chequered flag he was 7.957 seconds clear as Eriksson struggled with degradation on his rear tyres, which left the Swede fighting off the challenge of Motopark with VEB team-mate Sergio Sette Câmara for second.
Sette Câmara, a race winner in the FIA Formula 2 Championship in 2017, climbed from ninth on the grid to run fifth on the opening lap, before passing both Ferdinand Habsburg and Maximilian Günther to claim the final spot on the podium, ending 0.686 seconds off Eriksson.
Norris dropped from second on the grid to ninth on the opening lap, but made up ground to run fifth, only to struggle with his outright pace that saw him fall back behind Habsburg and the charging Pedro Piquet to finish seventh.
Daniel Ticktum was another to fall down the order in the later laps, with the Red Bull Junior claiming eighth, with Yuki Sekiguchi, who was one of those to be passed by Piquet, ending the race in ninth for the B-MAX Racing Team ahead of Guan Yu Zhou, who completed the top ten for SJM Theodore Racing by Prema.
Mick Schumacher was running in seventh and battling Habsburg for sixth when the German locked up at Lisboa and took to the escape road, and ultimately ended the race down in twentieth position.
Macau Grand Prix Qualifying Race Result
|1||7||Callum Ilott||GBR||SJM Theodore Racing by Prema||22:18.077s|
|2||15||Joel Eriksson||SWE||Motopark with VEB||+7.957s|
|3||19||Sergio Sette Camara||BRZ||Motopark with VEB||+8.643s|
|4||9||Maximilian Gunther||GER||SJM Theodore Racing by Prema||+9.798s|
|6||26||Pedro Piquet||BRZ||Van Amersfoort Racing||+10.821s|
|8||18||Daniel Ticktum||GBR||Motopark with VEB||+12.657s|
|9||22||Yuhi Sekiguchi||JAP||B-MAX Racing Team||+13.418s|
|10||8||Guan Yu Zhou||CHN||SJM Theodore Racing by Prema||+14.715s|
|11||21||Kenta Yamashita||JAP||B-MAX Racing Team||+15.505s|
|13||25||Ralf Aron||EST||Van Amersfoort Racing||+19.371s|
|14||17||Marino Sato||JAP||Motopark with VEB||+25.456s|
|17||16||Tadasuke Makino||JAP||Motopark with VEB||+32.173s|
|18||20||Alex Palou||ESP||ThreeBond Racing with Drago Corse||+32.606s|
|20||10||Mick Schumacher||GER||SJM Theodore Racing by Prema||+37.634s|