Qualifying for the United States Grand Prix is eagerly awaited in Austin, as the circuit is very tricky for the drivers. Indeed, the bumpy track and the fast corners force them to be at the limit, especially with the very stiff F1 2022s.
The Ferrari drivers dominated Free Practice 1 and 2 on Friday, Carlos Sainz then Charles Leclerc. This Saturday, Max Verstappen dominated Free Practice 3, and he will be the favorite for pole position.
Indeed, Leclerc receives ten penalty places for a change of engine and turbo. Sergio Pérez will drop five places, as will Guanyu Zhou and Fernando Alonso. In fact, Sainz will be Verstappen’s main rival during qualification.
At Red Bull, however, the atmosphere will be gloomy, after we learned of the death of Dietrich Mateschitz this evening. The Red Bull founder and owner of Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri has succumbed to a long illness aged 78.
Q1 – 18 mins
Mick Schumacher was the first to set a time of 1’37.816, and Zhou came within 0.071. Alex Albon took provisional third place at 0.171, while Kevin Magnussen took fourth time three tenths off the lead.
Verstappen set the fastest lap in 1’35.864, and Pérez came within three tenths of his team-mate. But Leclerc then set the fastest lap in 1’35.795. Lewis Hamilton came between the Red Bulls, and George Russell took fifth provisional time ahead of Lance Stroll and Lando Norris.
Alonso moved into sixth place ahead of Valtteri Bottas and Stroll, and Pierre Gasly came in ahead of Norris. Sebastian Vettel took the 11th fastest time before Sainz fell all the drivers in 1’35″297, the best provisional time of this Q1.
Albon was slightly hampered by Hamilton at Turn 2, while Zhou had his second lap canceled for breaching track limits at Turn 12, sending the Chinese back to the bottom of the standings.
All the drivers came out for a final lap 3 minutes from the end of the session, with the exception of the residents of Ferrari and Red Bull.
Yuki Tsunoda moved back into the top 10, and Daniel Ricciardo set the 13th fastest time. But Norris and Magnussen sped up and immediately put him in danger. Zhou and Albon improved, but neither Ocon nor Schumacher, who spun at the first turn. The two Haas did not cross Q1 at home.
The eliminated were Magnussen, Ricciardo, Ocon, Schumacher and Latifi.
Q2 – 15 mins
Surprise guest of this Q2 on a track that does not suit Williams, Albon set the first time in 1’37 “124, and Vettel like Tsunoda failed a few thousandths from the Thai. Bottas took the best time in 1’36 “748, and Zhou came between him and Albon.
Russell then took the lead in 1m35.692s, but Verstappen beat him in 1m35.294s. Leclerc improved to 1:35.246, and Sainz moved into third between Verstappen and Russell. Hamilton was sixth as Pérez took fifth.
Vettel’s time was canceled for breaking the limits, and Gasly was unable to set a fast lap due to a brake problem. “I did my best, I do what I can” the Frenchman got annoyed on the radio.
Tsunoda moved up to ninth place, and Gasly set the tenth fastest time. Vettel moved up to ninth and Stroll seventh, eliminating the two AlphaTauri, especially as Tsunoda’s time was cancelled.
Norris and Bottas climbed back into the top 10, Alonso improved, and Zhou was ninth fastest. But the Chinese wasted his time too, and was pushed back to 14th position, which replaced Norris in the top 10.
The eliminated were Albon, Vettel, Gasly, Zhou and Tsunoda.
Q3 – 12 minutes
Bottas set the first time in this third part of qualifying in 1’36″747, beaten by Norris in 1’36″566, then Alonso in 1’36″167. But Verstappen got everyone to agree in 1 ’35″044 but it had worn tires.
Leclerc then improved the Dutchman’s time to 1’34.624, and Pérez set the third fastest time, before Sainz moved into second place behind his team-mate. And Hamilton slotted in between Ferrari and Red Bull.
Russell provisionally moved into sixth ahead of Alonso, but Stroll got between the two men on his only Q3 attempt. Verstappen came out earlier than his direct rivals as he was on track just after Stroll. The Red Bull driver has decided to do two warm-up laps of his tires.
Pérez took the second fastest time at 0″021 from Leclerc. The latter improved with a 1’34″421, and Sainz passed him in 1’34″356! Verstappen came last among this quartet and fell behind Ferraris!
Sainz is on pole ahead of Verstappen, then Hamilton and Russell. Balade set the seventh fastest time and will therefore be fifth on the grid. Norris will be sixth ahead of Bottas.
|pos.||Pilot||Car||Q1 time||Q2 time||Q3 time|
|01||carlos sainz||Ferrari F1-75||1:35.297||1:35.590||1:34.356|
|02||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari F1-75||1:35.795||1:35.246||1:34.421|
|03||Max Verstappen||Red Bull RBPT RB18||1:35.864||1:35.294||1:34.448|
|04||Sergio Perez||Red Bull RBPT RB18||1:36.163||1:35.864||1:34.645|
|05||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes W13||1:36.148||1:35.732||1:34.947|
|06||george russell||Mercedes W13||1:36.195||1:35.692||1:34.988|
|07||Spear Stroll||Aston MartinMercedes AMR22||1:36.860||1:36.032||1:35.598|
|08||Lando Norris||McLarenMercedes MCL36||1:36.465||1:36.341||1:35.690|
|09||Fernando Alonso||Alpine Renault A522||1:36.446||1:35.988||1:35.876|
|ten||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42||1:36.746||1:36.321||1:36.319|
|11||Alexander Albon||Williams Mercedes FW44||1:36.932||1:36.368|
|12||Sebastian Vettel||Aston MartinMercedes AMR22||1:36.695||1:36.398|
|13||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri RBPT AT03||1:36.577||1:36.740|
|14||Guanyu-Zhou||Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42||1:36.656||1:36.970|
|15||Yuki Tsunoda||AlphaTauri RBPT AT03||1:36.808||1:37.147|
|16||Kevin Magnussen||Haas Ferrari VF-22||1:36.49|
|17||Daniel Ricardo||McLarenMercedes MCL36||1:37.046|
|18||Esteban Ocon||Alpine Renault A522||1:37.068|
|19||Mick Schumacher||Haas Ferrari VF-22||1:37.111|
|20||Nicholas Latifi||Williams Mercedes FW44||1:37.244|