Max Verstappen – P1
It was a dominant qualifying performance from Max Verstappen as he stormed to pole position for only the second time in his career. He topped all three segments of qualifying and took pole position by 0.123s.
After losing a certain victory last year at Interlagos thanks to that collision with Ocon, he’ll be looking to make amends tomorrow.
“I’m very happy with pole here today and the car and engine were performing really strongly together. We made a few improvements overnight and even after FP3 we made some final touches to the car and it really came alive in qualifying. Straight away from Q1 the car was flying and even though Q3 was a little more tricky as the temperature increased the car still felt good. Going purple in the middle sector and to be on pole by over a tenth here is a strong performance for us and Honda. Normally we have a quick race car so hopefully that will be the same tomorrow and I really enjoy driving on this track. I’m expecting an exciting and hopefully an enjoyable race, so now we just have to finish it off tomorrow.”
YES boys! 💪 I’m very happy with pole position! A big thanks to @redbullracing and @HondaRacingF1, the car was really good and a joy to drive 👌 Let’s finish it off tomorrow #KeepPushing #BrazilGP 🇧🇷 pic.twitter.com/kQkdsYffc5— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) November 16, 2019
Alex Albon – P6 (starts P5)
Qualifying was quite disappointing for the Thai drivers as he ended up last of the big six in Q3. He was 3rd fastest in Q1, but dropped to P6 by Q3 and over 0.4s behind his Dutch stablemate. With Leclerc’s penalty, he‘ll start 5th.
“All in all it wasn’t a bad comeback coming into qualifying but I’m still chasing for that final bit. Yes, it’s my first time here but I don’t like that excuse, and I don’t want to make excuses in general. I think it’s quite a tricky track, with long corners and low speeds. It’s very thermal sensitive so if you make a little mistake in one corner, you pay the price in the following four or five corners. Even in my second run I had a little snap into Turn 2 and then the tyres are too hot for the rest of the lap. They’re very fine margins here but it’s fun. There aren’t many tracks like this and I enjoy driving here, I just wanted to be a bit quicker today. Max did a great job and it was a good Saturday for the Team. Our race pace looks pretty good and with Charles’ penalty we start P5 so we have every reason to be in the mix tomorrow.”