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F1 | Singapore GP | Leclerc narrowly beats Perez and Hamilton to pole in mixed conditions, Verstappen P8 as he's forced to abandon his last lap

Charles Leclerc took pole position in a dramatic qualifying session in Singapore. World Championship leader Max Verstappen could only manage P8 as he had to pit to provide a fuel sample following the session.

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F1 | Singapore GP | Leclerc narrowly beats Perez and Hamilton to pole in mixed conditions, Verstappen P8 as he's forced to abandon his last lap
Fuente imagen: Scuderia Ferrari

Q1

Qualifying started with the drivers on intermediate tyres following torrential rain earlier in the day.

George Russell kicked things off with a 1:57.099, which was immediately beaten by Lewis Hamilton on a 1:56.937. The younger Brit went for a second consecutive push lap and went P1 by over a second.

On his first lap, Charles Leclerc logged a 1:55.054 to go P1, ahead of Russell, Perez, Hamilton and Stroll.

With five minutes to go, Leclerc led Verstappen, Perez, Sainz and Hamilton.

The two Williams cars, Haas’s and Ricciardo found themselves in the relegation zone at that point.

As the track continued to evolve and get faster, Max Verstappen banged in the quickest time of the session on a 1:53.057, just over a tenth ahead of 2021 rival Hamilton. Leclerc, Perez and Sainz completed the top 5.

Magnussen, Tsunoda and Guanyu all impressed in the slippery conditions as they finished inside the top 10.

The last car to cross the line, Mick Schumacher, got himself out of the bottom five and moved up to P14. Lando Norris squeezed through in 15th as McLaren massively struggled in the opening segment.

Esteban Ocon could only manage P18, complaining he lost the brakes on his final attempt.

Despite multiple moments at turns 7, 8 and 18 for a number of drivers, none of the drivers hit the wall.

Bottas, Ricciardo, Ocon, Albon and Latifi exited at the end of Q1.

Q2

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc instantly bettered the quickest Q1 time with a 1:52.343 to go P1 early on. Verstappen, Perez, Sainz, Hamilton, Norris, Alonso, Stroll, Gasly and Vettel completed the top 10 following the first proper runs.

With five minutes remaining, the Aston Martins switched to dry tyres. Everyone else stayed with the inters.

The gamble from Aston didn’t work as Stroll and Vettel ended up in P12 and P14. Both drivers had off-track excursions during their time out on track.

Stroll had been improving in Sectors 1 and 2 on his final run, but it was too damp in the last sector ultimately.

Late laps from the AlphaTauris of Gasly and Tsunoda, plus Alonso and Magnussen, saw George Russell bumped out in Q2 as the Brit was only P11. He missed out by 0.006s.

At the sharp end, Leclerc was fastest from Hamilton, Verstappen, Perez and Alonso.

Joining Russell and the Astons in exiting at the end of Q2 were Schumacher and Guanyu.

Q3

Eight of the ten drivers went for softs at the beginning of the final segment in qualifying. Only the AlphaTauris went for inters.

A 1:53.082 from Lewis Hamilton put him quickest on the first lap of Q3. Tsunoda, Leclerc, Verstappen and Norris rounded out the top 5 at that point.

Hamilton continued to fly and lowered his benchmark to a 1:51.019, which put him ahead of Verstappen, Perez, Leclerc and Sainz.

A 1:49.412 from Charles Leclerc with a couple of minutes to go would be the time that sealed pole position for the Monegasque.

Sergio Perez missed out on pole by 0.022s as he put his Red Bull on the front row. Lewis Hamilton completed the top 3 as he lost out on P1 by a mere 0.054s.

Max Verstappen looked set for a comfortable pole as he was 0.9s up after Sector 2. However, he was told to pit before he finished it. Red Bull did not to discuss why on the radio. However, it seems a lack of fuel could have been the cause if they had completed the lap. All teams must provide a sufficient fuel sample after the hour is over. 

Sainz, Alonso, Norris, Gasly, Verstappen, Magnussen and Tsunoda completed the order behind the top 3.

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