George Russell took his first F1 spot at the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix to keep Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc at bay, while Max Verstappen will start in provisional 10th after suffering a power loss in the third quarter.
After a final training session led by Nicholas Latifi, qualifying took place in dry conditions. Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton led the first quarter, capitalizing on the development of the track to lead his teammate George Russell. The drivers continued to accelerate into the second quarter, as Verstappen Leclerc led.
In Q3, Verstappen was left in desperation due to a loss of power, and with the Ferraris at the temporary pole he could only watch his hopes of the pole fading. But Russell shocked the Scuderia by 1 meter and 17.377 seconds, keeping Carlos Sainz 0.044 seconds behind, and Charles Leclerc in third by about a tenth.
Lando Norris qualified in the second row while Esteban Ocon will participate in the third row with his alpine teammate Fernando Alonso.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton was seventh, and former teammate Valtteri Bottas qualified eighth, leaving Daniel Ricciardo in ninth and Verstappen in tenth.
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Red Bull’s Sergio Perez was a surprise elimination from Q2 in P11 – Perez frustrated to hit traffic on his last attempt. Zhou Guanyu was pleased with his performance in P12 with Alfa Romeo, while Kevin Magnussen got his P13 in upgraded Haas – although it was the driver who irritated Perez.
Lance Stroll settled in 14th, Mick Schumacher last was in the second quarter as the Hungarian Grand Prix is set to start with provisional 15th.
Yuki Tsunoda missed the second quarter by 0.035sec as he qualified for 16th, ahead of Williams’ Alex Albon and Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel in P18. Pierre Gasly lost out due to track limits and qualified for 19th to make a double first-quarter elimination for Alfauri and FP3 star Nicolas Latifi from the standings thanks to a mistake in the last corner.
After a sore display in France, Ferrari has taken its first steps towards redemption – while Mercedes is back on top. At least for now…
as it happened
Q1 – Hamilton and Russell start with the front foot
After a soaked FP3 session – where Nicholas Latifi took first – qualifying began in dry conditions – with swathes of gray clouds setting an alarming backdrop.
Max Verstappen climbed to the top early by 1m 19.020sec while the Ferraris stayed in the garage during the first few minutes of Q1. With more and more rubber put in, times duly slipped, and Verstappen improved to lead the brunt in Q1.
Late rounds of Mercedes saw Lewis Hamilton smash the ceremony with a time of 1 million 18.374 seconds, while his teammate George Russell was only 0.033 seconds behind with his efforts. Carlos Sainz improved to P3, 0.060sec off the pace, while Verstappen slipped back to P4 by a 0.135sec margin to leave Lando Norris to finish in the top five with McLaren.
Fernando Alonso was under tenth from Norris in P6, Ricciardo behind the two-time champion in seventh, while Charles Leclerc struggled for a P8.
Esteban Ocon finished ninth and Valtteri Bottas took the top ten by 0.561sec. Zhou Guanyu was behind his teammate, keeping Kevin Magnussen at bay in P12. Sergio Perez was unknown in P13, with 14th place Mick Schumacher and then Lance Stroll the last two drivers to make it to safety.
Yuki Tsunoda lost second place in the second quarter by 0.035sec, while Alex Albon lost second place on the board in P17, while Sebastian Vettel – whose damage was repaired in an FP3 crash by the hard-working Aston Martin crew, along with Vettel Himself – to occupy the eighteenth place. .
Track limits at Turn 5 cost Pierre Gasly, who finished 19th, and FP3 leader Latifi finished last with a mistake on the last corner, despite placing a purple first sector in his final run.
Kick off: Tsunoda, Albon, Vettel, Gasly, Latifi
Q2 – Perez lost while Verstappen and Leclerc set the pace
Times in the second quarter were threatening to drop below the 1m 18s mark, given the fast track development, and Verstappen was the first to break that barrier with a time of 1m 17.703secs, keeping Alonso at bay by 0.201s. Lockdown on his first attempt cost first quarter leader Hamilton. Perez’s time has been determined for the track boundary.
Verstappen didn’t get better on his first effort, but Leclerc jumped into P2 by 0.065sec to bump Alonso into P3. Sainz was 0.038secs behind his compatriot in P4 with Hamilton clinching the top five.
Ricciardo has improved with his recent efforts to find safety in P8, Ocon off McLaren in P9, and Bottas is the last driver to make a top 10 shootout.
Despite re-laps Perez, he lost in the third quarter by 0.071sec, and the Red Bull driver rumbled into traffic in the shape of Magnussen (P13) in Sector 1 on his last run. Between Red Bull and Haas was Zhou in P12, the rookie pleased with his offer.
Hiking was seven tenths from safety in fourteenth place – leaving Schumacher last and about eight tenths away from safety.
Ejected: Perez, Cho, Magnussen, Stroll, Schumacher
Searching for ‘strong end points’ says Sergio Perez in P10 Hungarian Grand Prix
Q3 – Ferrari has snatched a pole away by a magical Russell lap
Drag refused to unleash but the Q3 was anything but dry in terms of movement, with at least three drivers in the race for first place. Sainz set the early benchmark at 1m 17.505s, Russell came second – nearly half a second – while a mistake in Sector 3 made Leclerc a provisional third ahead of Hamilton.
As for Verstappen, his career first put him in seventh place, 1.318 seconds off the lead. He soon reported a power loss, which led to an angry flick of the switches and dials in the RB18’s cockpit. “Nothing is working,” Verstappen shouted as his hopes began to fade.
Sainz knew he had left time on the table and hit the top of his last career with a time of 1min 17.421sec. But Russell’s astonishing efforts trumped all, as the Briton delivered his first career spot and first Mercedes of the season with a staggering 1 million 17.377 seconds.
So Leclerc settled into third, with Norris sharing the second row with P4 – just under four tenths of Russell’s pace.
Ocon rounded out the top five and Alonso made sure Alpine finished third when he qualified sixth. In the meantime, Hamilton was not happy that he settled in seventh, and his former teammate Bottas finished eighth.
Ricciardo qualified ninth while a beleaguered Verstappen will start provisionally 10th on Sunday, after Red Bull were unable to diagnose the costly malfunction of their power unit.
“I’m over the moon, so whirring. Yesterday was probably our worst Friday of the season, and last night everyone was working hard. We didn’t really know what direction to go, then on the last lap I turned round one, huge turn 1 , round two, and turn two was huge, lap time just kept coming, and it kept coming in. I ran across the line, looked across the screen and saw we went into P1. That was an incredible feeling!” – George Russell, Mercedes
Russell in pole position, chasing Ferrari and Red Bulls all they have to do to recover when the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix kicks off at 1500 local time on Sunday.
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