Max Verstappen ties Ayrton Senna pole record: F1 Imola qualifying ...

30 days ago
F1 qualifying

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen clinched pole position at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on a day that many believed P1 could be up for grabs.

Nevertheless, it was business as usual for the three-time world champion and Verstappen's pole means he has now tied Ayrton Senna's consecutive pole record with eight in a row.

The McLaren duo of  Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris had been quicker in practice but they couldn't beat the brilliance of Verstappen who put in a sensation lap in Q3.

Piastri and Norris will take up second and third on the grid on Sunday after falling just behind the Dutchman.

Verstappen’s time was a mere 0.074 seconds faster than Piastri's, who managed to outpace Norris by just 0.017 seconds on the final lap of the session.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc secured fourth place, 0.263 seconds ahead of his teammate Carlos Sainz, who placed fifth.

Mercedes' George Russell could only finish in sixth place, followed by Red Bull's Yuki Tsunoda in seventh, before the second Mercedes driven by Lewis Hamilton in eighth.

A rare exit in Q1 for Fernando Alonso will see him start the race on the back row after he went well wide at the Villeneuve chicane.

Imola F1 schedule: What time is the Imola Grand Prix race? UKUSACanadaAustraliaIndiaDateSunday, May 19Sunday, May 19Sunday, May 19Sunday, May 19Sunday, May 19Time2 p.m. BST9 a.m. ET9 a.m. ET11 p.m. AEST6:30 p.m. IST

MORE: How does F1 points system work?

F1 grid, qualifying times for Imola Grand PrixPositionDriverTeamQual. time1.Max VerstappenRed Bull1:14.7462.Oscar PiastriMcLaren1:14.8203.Lando NorrisMcLaren1:14.8374.Charles LeclercFerrari1:14.9705.Carlos SainzFerrari1:15.2336.George RussellMercedes1:15.2347.Yuki TsunodaRB1:15.4658.Lewis HamiltonMercedes1:15.5049.Daniel RicciardoRB1:15.67410.Nico HulkenbergHaas1:15.98011.Sergio Perez*Red Bull1:15.70612.Esteban Ocon*Alpine1:15.90613.Lance Stroll*Aston Martin1:15.99214.Alex Albon*Williams1:16.20015.Pierre Gasly*Alpine1:16.38116.Valtteri Bottas**Kick Sauber1:16.62617.Logan Sargeant**Williams1:16.83418.Guanyu Zhou**Kick Sauber1:16.85419.Kevin Magnussen**Haas1:16.91720.Fernando Alonso**Aston Martin1:17.265

* Eliminated after Q2
** Eliminated after Q1

F1 Imola: Grand Prix qualifying as it happenedEnd of Q3

Verstappen has POLE! He lost a little time in the final sector but it was enough to see off Norris who finished third as Piastri stole his place on the front row.

MAX VERSTAPPEN TAKES POLE AT IMOLA!!! ????#F1 #ImolaGP pic.twitter.com/aSMipgjNp1

— Formula 1 (@F1) May 18, 2024

Q3, 1 min to go: Leclerc can't improve his time and here comes Verstappen who purples the first sector! Norris is too far behind...

Q3, 4 mins to go: All cars are in the pits as they prepare for their final hot laps.

Q3, 7 mins to go: Verstappen leads and Norris is going to need a quality lap to get pole with Max's lap near perfect.

Q3, 11 mins to go: Here we go then, let's find out who will be on pole for the Imola Grand Prix!

Start of Q3End of Q2

Perez is 11th and OUT! Daniel Ricciardo sneaks into Q3 above the Red Bull meanwhile Verstappen retakes first place. 

Eliminated after Q2:

Sergio PerezEsteban OconLance StrollAlex AlbonPierre Gasly

Q2, 4 mins to go: At risk of elimination right now: Russell, Gasly, Ocon, Stroll, Albon

Q2, 8 mins to go: Leclerc puts in a cracking lap and flies to the top!  

Q2, 13 mins to go: The Mercedes duo of Hamilton and Russell are first on track.

Start of Q2End of Q1

Alonso is out! The veteran finishes plum last and will start tomorrow's race from P20. 

Sauber duo Bottas and Zhou struggle to find pace again and are joined by Logan Sargeant and Kevin Magnussen in the bottom five.

Eliminated after Q1:

Valtteri BottasLogan SargeantGuanyu ZhouKevin MagnussenFernando Alonso

Q1, 1 min to go: Hulkenberg tops the timings for a brief moment before Verstappen trumps him. Still a very speedy lap from the German.

Q1, 6 mins to go: It's Alonso's turn to take a trip through some gravel, going wide at the Villeneuve chicane. He is able to slow his Aston Martin down and stay out of trouble, though.

Q1, 9 mins to go: After topping FP3, Piastri has continued to show his pace, setting the early speed with a 1:15.940.

Q1, 12 mins to go: Extra gravel has been added to the Imola track for this year's Grand Prix, and Albon drives through it at the last turn but recovers well. 

Q1, 14 mins to go: Russell is the only driver with medium tires on but aborts his first lap and returns to the pits. Appears that soft tires are the way to go.

Start of Q1

Here we go!

2 mins to qualifying start: Cars are heading out onto the pitlane, and the start of qualifying is imminent.

10 mins to qualifying start: Beautiful weather in the north of Italy today – 24C and only a few clouds in the sky.

1 hour from qualifying: With all three practice sessions complete, it's the two McLaren drivers who we'll be keeping a close eye on during qualifying, as they were fastest in FP3.

FP3 CLASSIFICATION @McLarenF1 are fastest heading into qualifying#F1 #ImolaGP pic.twitter.com/H7we8oRijT

— Formula 1 (@F1) May 18, 2024

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