FORMULA 1

Brazilian GP qualifying: Kevin Magnussen bags his first-ever pole!

F1 update

The Brazilian GP qualifying session in Interlagos saw Kevin Magnussen bag the pole in changing conditions for the sprint race.

Formula 1 has returned to the iconic Interlagos for the Sao Paulo Grand Prix. The penultimate round of the season has more to offer with the third and final sprint of the season.

Therefore, on Friday cars hit the track for qualifying against the usual Saturday. This meant the drivers and the teams had only one Free practice session to gear up the cars for the Qualifying. Things got more complicated due to the tricky conditions during the qualifying.

The drivers were faced with a wet track at the start of the qualification session. Although the rain had stopped, the track was still not ready for the slicks. So, the obvious Tyre choice was the intermediates.

Brazilian GP Q1 review

The Q1 session was an eventful session with drivers lodging faster laps after each lap because the track getting dryer. All the drivers opted to stay on the intermediate Tyres for most of the session. However, they took the risk as the session neared the end and the track became dryer.

Pierre Gasly was the first to make the call. With 9 minutes to go in Q1, the Frenchman switched to the soft tyres. And it was clear after a couple of laps that the time had come for the change. So, the rest of the grid switched to softs.

The mixed conditions meant that the times were going to be a bit confusing and much more than expected. Anyways, the session ended with Lando Norris topping the timings chart with a time of 1.13.106.

Nicholas Latifi, Zhou Guanyu, Valtteri Bottas, Yuki Tsunoda, and Mick Schumacher got knocked out in Q1.

It was a rather disappointing session for the two Alfa Romeo drivers who showed a decent pace in the dry Free practice.

Q2 review

The second session started with dry conditions with every track dryer and every driver on the soft compound. The session was rather uneventful with drivers finding better grip and time in comparison to Q1.

The session was threatened by the clouds throughout. The showers of rain ultimately came around the end of the session. However, the showers were not that intense and didn’t seem to affect the grip and time of the drivers.

The session ultimately ended with Max Verstappen setting the fastest time of 1.10.881 – much faster in comparison to Q1.

Alex Albon, Pierre Gasly, Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, and Lance Stroll were the drivers that got eliminated in Q2.

Q3 review

The final session of the Brazilian GP qualifying started with somewhat similar conditions to Q2. However, the conditions were bound to change and they did. The session started with everyone except Charles Leclerc going out on the soft Tyres. A strategic gamble that will prove costly to the Scuderia.

The drivers got only one proper hotlap run before George Russell ended his Mercedes in gravel. This led to a red flag stopping the session with Kevin Magnussen on the provisional pole and just 10 seconds over 8 minutes left.

This also meant that Charles Leclerc wasn’t able to set a proper time because of the Tyre selection by the team.

Anyways, eventually, after the car was cleared off the gravel, the session resumed. However, the conditions changed and were no longer suitable for the slicks forcing the drivers to come out on the inters.

This meant that no driver could match the time set by Kevin Magnussen as the intermediates were incredibly slower than the softs. The provisional pole ultimately turned into the maiden pole for Magnussen.

Magnussen grabbed the pole with a time of 1.11.674.

Click here to get the full results of the Brazilian GP qualifying.

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