The Mexican driver Sergio Pérez (Red Bull) won this Saturday the “pole position” for the Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, the second round of the World Championship, with champion Max Verstappen (Red Bull) in 15th.
Pérez took advantage of a mechanical failure suffered by his teammate (broken transmission shaft), still during the second of the three stages of qualifying, to qualify as the fastest, with a time of 1m28.265s.
The Monegasque Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) was second fastest, 0.155 seconds behind Pérez, shooting with the Spaniard Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin) for third place in the session, 0.465s away.
However, as he had to change his Ferrari’s ECU for this race (using the third this season, when only two are allowed), Leclerc will lose 10 places on the starting grid, moving from 12th place for Sunday’s race. .
Briton George Russell (Mercedes) is thus promoted to third, while Spaniard Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) rises to fourth, ahead of Canadian Lance Stroll (Aston Martin).
Briton Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) saw his best lap taken away due to an infraction, being only eighth in the session, moving up to seventh on the grid due to Leclerc’s penalty. Max Verstappen did not go beyond 15th position.
“It was a shame what happened to him, he was very fast all weekend”, lamented his teammate, Sergio Pérez, who won the second “pole position” of his career, on the same track where he had reached the first, in 2022.
No illusions seem to be Leclerc, who despite the second fastest time in qualifying, was not particularly satisfied. “I’m happy on the one hand and not on the other. I’m happy with my return. On the other hand, Red Bull is in a world of its own”, he lamented.