Max Verstappen will start tomorrow’s FORMULA 1 HEINEKEN GRANDE PRÊMIO DO BRASIL 2019 from pole position having been quickest in all three parts of this afternoon’s qualifying session at the Autodromo Carlos Pace in Interlagos.
This is only the second time in his career that the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing driver starts from the number one slot on the grid, after doing so in this year’s Hungarian Grand Prix. It’s actually the third time this season he has been quickest in qualifying, but he was given a grid penalty in Mexico when he failed to slow for yellow flags on his best lap. “Yes boys, that was really good”, said the Dutchman when he was told over the radio on his slowing down lap.
“The car was on fire! That’s the best birthday present isn’t it Christian?” Earlier in the morning, his team principal Christian Horner was presented with a cake to celebrate his 46th birthday and pole position is definitely the icing on the cake for him and his team.
For a brief moment, after the ten remaining cars had gone out for the second Q3 runs, on a day where the rain kept away, allowing the track to rubber-in nicely, it looked as though Sebastian Vettel had done enough for pole. However, there was more to come from Verstappen, who had made a tiny mistake, running wide at turn 9 on his first run, so the Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow driver had to settle for second, his car lacking a bit of pace in the middle sector.
It’s almost a rule that Lewis Hamilton has to make an appearance in the qualifying press conference this year and sure enough, the Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport driver was third quickest. Charles Leclerc was fourth fastest in the second Ferrari, but he will drop down to fourteenth on the grid with a 10 place penalty for having fitted a fourth internal combustion engine for this event.
He was the only driver to opt for Medium compound tyres to make the cut into the top-ten shoot-out, with all the others using the Soft Pirellis, thus giving him a few more strategy options in tomorrow’s 71 lap race. Valtteri Bottas was fifth in the second Mercedes, while Alex Albon was sixth for Red Bull, around four tenths slower than his team-mate. The man he swapped seats with after the summer break, Pierre Gasly was the winner in the mid-field battle, taking his Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda to seventh, his fourth consecutive top ten start. It was a surprisingly good day for Haas, as Romain Grosjean was eighth and
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Honda||1m07.508s||–|
|5||Alexander Albon||Red Bull/Honda||1m07.935s||0.427s|
|6||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m08.837s||1.329s|
|8||Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo/Ferrari||1m08.984s||1.476s|
|12||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo/Ferrari||1m08.919s||–|
|15||Sergio Perez||Racing Point/Mercedes||1m09.035s||–|
|16||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Honda||1m09.320s||–|
|17||Lance Stroll||Racing Point/Mercedes||1m09.536s||–|
|20||Carlos Sainz Jr.||McLaren/Renault||–||–|