Leclerc takes pole and further complicates Verstappen's title in Singapore

Max Verstappen will need a miracle to seal his second Formula 1 win at the Singapore Grand Prix, where he will start eighth after aborting his last attempt due to lack of fuel.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
01 October 2022 Saturday 12:34
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Leclerc takes pole and further complicates Verstappen's title in Singapore

Max Verstappen will need a miracle to seal his second Formula 1 win at the Singapore Grand Prix, where he will start eighth after aborting his last attempt due to lack of fuel. The Dutchman, leader of the World Championship with an advantage of 116 points with six tests remaining, should win the race, in addition to adding the fastest lap, and that Charles Leclerc finishes in eighth position, who achieved pole position at the Marina Bay circuit. The Monegasque was the fastest in qualifying marked by rain before the session.

"We don't have a lot of data for the race and in the long runs, but if we start well, I'm sure we can win," said the Ferrari driver, first ahead of Sergio Pérez, who should finish fourth or worse so that the cabal of Verstappen, his partner at Red Bull, lead him to retain the title. The second row of the starting grid will be for Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz, while Fernando Alonso finished in a great fifth place. The Spaniard squeezed his Alpine in a very complicated classification, both due to the complexity of the circuit and the track conditions.

The drivers' performance at the start of qualifying was clearly influenced by the wet asphalt. Faced with a possible accident that would ruin their options, the drivers took to the track with intermediate tires and despite this some were close to catastrophe, including Verstappen, whose Red Bull skidded at the exit of a corner and was a few centimeters away. to hit the wall.

However, the scare did not cow 'Mad Max', best time in Q1 followed by Hamilton and Leclerc. In the first minutes of the second challenge, the difficult Singapore street circuit, with several corners without escape, was still a trap for the drivers. Most of the track was dry, but very specific areas, some very complicated in the middle of the curve, still had water.

The Aston Martins of Stroll and Vettel, the only brave ones along with Zhou to mount soft tires, paid for their audacity and did not make the cut in a Q2 already dominated by Leclerc. Alonso was on the brink of burning out, but eventually moved into the final battle with the fifth fastest time thanks to a great lap at the last opportunity. Instead, against all odds, George Russell was left out of a fight for pole to which Hamilton passed with the second fastest time. Lots of difference between the two Mercedes.

The delicate conditions of the track, which in part minimized the differences between the teams, meant that there were unexpected guests in Q3, such as Tsunoda, Gasly and Magnussen. The ten drivers dared with the white tyres, although the track was still wet, especially in the third set. The times went down with each lap as the asphalt dried, with constant changes in the first position, briefly occupied by Hamilton and even Alonso.

The margins between the favorites were very narrow, less than two tenths between Leclerc, Hamilton, Sergio Pérez and Sainz, but in the end the Monegasque took the cat to the water, more skilled on the bumpy Marina Bay circuit, where Verstappen aborted his last attempt after an error in the final sector and, above all, because he did not have enough fuel to return to the pits, which would have meant a sanction from the FIA. Everything indicates that the Dutchman will not be able to seal his second title in the Singaporean mousetrap. He can afford it, his reign is not in danger.

1. Charles Leclerc

2. Sergio Perez

3. Lewis Hamilton

4. Carlos Sainz

5.Fernando Alonso

6. Lando Norris

7. Pierre Gasly

8. Max Verstappen

9. Yuki Tsunoda

10. Kevin Magnussen

11. George Russell

12. Lance Stroll

13. Mick Schumacher

14. Sebastian Vettel

15. Guanyu Zhou

16. Valtteri Bottas

17. Daniel Ricciardo

18. Esteban Ocon

19. Alexander Albon

20. Nicholas Latifi

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