Formula 1

Sergio Pérez clinches a stunning pole position at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

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Credit: Getty Images/Red Bull Content Pool

Sergio Pérez clinched his maiden pole position at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Charles Leclerc was in second position, just 0.025 seconds slower than Pérez. Carlos Sainz was in third position behind his team-mate.

Max Verstappen could only finish in fourth position on a day when his team-mate took his first pole position of his career. Lewis Hamilton who was the pole-sitter last year was knocked out in the first qualification session.

The qualifying session started under the lights with air temperatures at 23 degrees C and track temperatures at 24 degrees C at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

The Pirelli tyre choice at this race is the white-striped hard compound tyres (C2), yellow-striped medium compound tyres (C3), and red-striped soft compound tyres (C4), the middle range of compounds in the Pirelli tyre range.

Q1: Hamilton knocked out

The two Haas F1 Team drivers, Mick Schumacher and Kevin Magnussen,were the first drivers on the track. The drivers went out on the soft compound tyres for their initial runs.

George Russell and Lewis Hamilton went out on the medium compound tyres and struggled for grip. Nicholas Latifi brought out the red flags with a crash at Turn 13.

Verstappen went to the top of the time charts with a lap time of 1m29.330s. Carlos Sainz with a storming lap of 1m28.855s went fastest to take the top spot. Leclerc was in second position behind him.

Yuki Tsunoda was called back into the pits with a fuel-related issue. Russell and Hamilton were back out on the soft compound tyres.

As the session wound down all attention was on Hamilton as he was in the drop zone. In the dying minutes, Hamilton moved into fifteenth position but was knocked out by Lance Stroll.

The session ended with Sainz at the top of the time charts ahead of Leclerc and Verstappen.

Q1 dropzone: Lewis Hamilton, Alexander Albon, Nico Hulkenberg, Nicholas Latifi, Yuki Tsunoda

Q2: Schumacher has a nasty crash

At the start of the session, Leclerc went fastest with a lap time of 1m28.883s ahead of Pérez and Verstappen.

Schumacher then had a heavy crash that brought out the red flags. Young Schumacher took some time to step out of the car and was taken by ambulance to the medical center.

The German was flown by helicopter to hospital for precautionary checks. The session resumed after almost an hour’s delay.

Sainz went to the top of the time charts as both McLaren F1 team drivers were eliminated.

Q2 dropzone: Lando Norris, Daniel Ricciardo, Zhou Guanyu, Mick Schumacher, Lance Stroll

Q3: Pérez takes pole position

The last all-important twelve minutes of the top ten shootout started with pole position being contested by the Scuderia Ferrari drivers and Verstappen.

Sainz went to the top of the time charts with a lap time of 1m28.402s. Verstappen struggled with grip and was only in sixth position.

Leclerc took provisional pole but was displaced by a stunning lap of 1m28.200s by Pérez. A first ever pole position for the Mexican.

Verstappen could only go fourth fastest ahead of Esteban Ocon and Russell. Fernando Alonso, Valtteri Bottas, Pierre Gasly and Kevin Magnussen completed the top 10 positions.

Top 10: Sergio Pérez, Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz, Max Verstappen, Esteban Ocon, George Russell, Fernando Alonso, Valtteri Bottas, Pierre Gasly, Kevin Magnussen

111Sergio PerezMEXOracle Red Bull Racing1:29.7051:28.9241:28.20020
216Charles LeclercMONScuderia Ferrari1:29.0391:28.7801:28.22522
355Carlos SainzESPScuderia Ferrari1:28.8551:28.6861:28.40223
41Max VerstappenNEDOracle Red Bull Racing1:28.9281:28.9451:28.46122
531Esteban OconFRABWT Alpine F1 Team1:30.0931:29.5841:29.06819
663George RussellGBRMercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:29.6801:29.6181:29.10421
714Fernando AlonsoESPBWT Alpine F1 Team1:29.9781:29.2951:29.14720
877Valtteri BottasFINAlfa Romeo Racing1:29.6831:29.4041:29.18322
910Pierre GaslyFRAScuderia AlphaTauri1:29.8911:29.4181:29.25422
1020Kevin MagnussenDENHaas F1 Team1:29.8311:29.5461:29.58824
114Lando NorrisGBRMcLaren F1 Team1:29.9571:29.65116
123Daniel RicciardoAUSMcLaren F1 Team1:30.0091:29.77317
1324Zhou GuanyuCHNAlfa Romeo Racing1:29.9781:29.81917
1447Mick SchumacherGERHaas F1 Team1:30.1671:29.92013
1518Lance StrollCANAston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team1:30.2561:31.00915
1644Lewis HamiltonGBRMercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team1:30.34311
1723Alexander AlbonTHAWilliams Racing1:30.4929
1827Nico HulkenbergGERAston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team1:30.54310
196Nicholas LatifiCANWilliams Racing1:31.8174
NC22Yuki TsunodaJAPScuderia AlphaTauriDNS2
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