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F1 | Qatar GP | Qualifying report: Drama at the end with a puncture for Gasly and Lewis Hamilton taking his 102nd pole position

Hamilton was flying, Verstappen shaved the gap, but it was still sizable in the end. Well over four tenths in the end between the title rivals, with Bottas and Gasly sharing the second row.

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F1 | Qatar GP | Qualifying report: Drama at the end with a puncture for Gasly and Lewis Hamilton taking his 102nd pole position
Fuente imagen: formula1.com

Round 20 of 22, getting closer to the season finale but the battle for the Championship is still intense and uncertain.

May the weekend at the Losail International Circuit be the closing chapter for the title win?

This track proved to be fast, faster than many predicted. It was Lewis Hamilton who was on fire. He pulled out a flying lap and crosses the line with a 1m 20.827s.

The final seconds of the session were a bit dramatic – Gasly ran wide, damaged his front wing and got a puncture. He had to stop the car on the start-finish straight, with yellow flags definitely catching out Vettel and Norris.

Max Verstappen crossed the line in second position, however, he might get a penalty for failing to lift the gas pedal with a double yellow flag.

As per Valtteri Bottas, he has been on a stellar run of form of late, and in topping both FP2 and FP3, he has shown his car is quick in both the full glare of the sun and the cooler nighttime conditions. However, he qualified third behind Dutchman Verstappen and his teammate.

One of the main issues at the Losail Circuits are the high kerbs – which have been causing issues. The vibrations from running at such high speeds over them has led to a number of small piece of bodywork flying off on a number of cars so far across the three practice sessions, from both the front and rear wings.

Another thing to note is that being this a circuit belonging to the motorbikes Championship, it isn't the widest. That meant a lot of traffic in Q1 when 20 cars were out on the track, making it harder to register a fast lap.

The only teams who got both cars into Q3 were Mercedes, AlphaTauri and Alpine. With the Mercedes occupying first and third place, Pierre Gasly starting from the second row, Fernando Alonso will start from 5th position followed by his compatriot Carlos Sainz. 

Leclerc and Norris have both been wide - with the Ferrari man losing his lap time for good measure. He seriously risked being excluded from Q2 but coming out on the second set of tyres, he managed to be in the first 15. Yet, he couldn’t find the proper pace and qualified 13th.

To everyone’s surprise, Sergio Perez was excluded from Q3 – he will start from 11th position tomorrow, meaning that it is two versus one at the front. This goes to Mercedes’ advantage unless he manages to pull out a strong recovery drive tomorrow.

The two Aston Martin didn’t shine today. Only Sebastian Vettel managed to get into Q3 and will be starting 10th, behind Esteban Ocon. His team mate Lance Stroll, on the other hand, was eliminated in Q2 and will start behind the Mexican Checo Perez from 12th place.

The McLarens have been suffering during the second half of the qualifying session. After a delusional Grand Prix last weekend, they weren’t lucky today neither – indeed, even after swapping to the softs compounds, only Lando Norris managed to reach Q3. He will start from 456th position.

On the other hand, Daniel Ricciardo is down in P14, ahead of George Russell.



Raikkonen, Latifi, Giovinazzi and the two Haas drivers didn’t make it through the first cut. They were excluded from Q2 and will start at the back of the grid.

Latifi was probably the most disappointed after looking strong on Friday’s practice session. But that Williams isn't liking the exposed conditions here, with the wind changing direction and in the end, Russell only made in through in P15.

The final classification looked like this.

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