Hamilton wins qualifying drama: Verstappen crashes into the gang in the last corner

Hamilton wins qualifying drama

Verstappen crashes into the gang in the last corner

Max Verstappen is ahead of Lewis Hamilton in a tightly contested qualifying for the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix. But then the Formula 1 record world champion turns up again at the end and takes his 103rd pole. Verstappen gives everything again – briefly loses control and crashes into the gang.

Formula 1 record world champion Lewis Hamilton starts from pole position in the first Grand Prix of Saudi Arabia and continues to feed his hopes for the eighth title win. The English Mercedes star relegated his team-mate Valtteri Bottas (Finland) and world championship leader Max Verstappen (Netherlands / Red Bull) to the places in qualifying in Jeddah.

Verstappen was on course for the best time of the day, but in the last corner of his last lap he lost control of his Red Bull and hit the side of the track. “That’s bad,” said the Dutchman, “the rear has slipped away, third place is disappointing when you see what kind of lap I was doing there.” It was initially unclear whether the Red Bull’s gearbox was also damaged in the impact: A change would result in a five-place transfer back.

“The speed is phenomenal”

Hamilton gasped after a “tough qualifying”, “the track is difficult, very technical, very complex, the speed is phenomenal. In the race it is always difficult against Red Bull, it will be a close battle.” For the world champion it was the 103rd Formula 1 pole and the fifth of the season. Former world champion Sebastian Vettel did not get past 17th place in the Aston Martin, he failed for the third time this season in the first qualifying segment. Haas driver Mick Schumacher starts from 19th place.

Verstappen is eight points ahead of seven-time champion Hamilton in the penultimate race of the season (Sunday, 6.30 p.m. CET / RTL and in the live ticker on ntv.de.). If the Dutchman has 18 more points than the Briton, he will be world champion prematurely for the first time. Otherwise, the decision will be made in Abu Dhabi on December 12th.

Mercedes, on the other hand, can perfect the eighth constructors’ title in a row, but the team is only five points ahead of Red Bull.

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