Formula One world champion Max Verstappen will start Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix from pole position after setting a fastest time of 1:17.775s.
George Russell starts the race from second place with a time of 1:18.079s for the Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team and speaking following the session he said:
It feels like the team deserved more today – the car has been great this weekend and it’s a testament to the hard work that has been going in for so long. At this high altitude, drag is less of a factor for us on the straights, and the update we brought to Austin is performing well. We saw last week with Lewis what the car was capable of, and this weekend, it felt like pole position was there for us. I’m kicking myself about the final run, but at the end of the day, there are no points for qualifying and I’m excited to be back on the front row. We will be going for it in the race and our long runs looked decent yesterday, so I’m excited to go racing and see what we’ve got.
Seven-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton starts the race from P3 following a time of 1:18.084s and speaking following the action, Hamilton said:
I’m proud of the team – this is the best qualifying we’ve had all year. It just shows that you can never give up, and that perseverance is the way forward, so a big thank you to everybody here and back at the factory. In terms of the laps, they were pretty closely matched, but obviously when the first one is deleted, you have to make sure the second is completely clean. There was still more performance in it but it’s great to be so close to the Red Bull cars after we have been chasing them each weekend this year. So, we will just keep pushing, and I’m pretty happy starting from P3. It’s a long way down to Turn One…
Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team Principal and CEO Toto Wolff commented saying:
We had a mega car today in FP3, as we saw from the lap times in that session, but then conditions changed a bit and it really closed up at the front. All the way through the session, we couldn’t really match Verstappen in the stadium section, but George’s lap was zero to him on the final run until the lock up at Turn 12. Still, those are good starting positions for tomorrow – and there will be opportunity in the race. We brought our final upgrade to Austin, which is working well, and we have been at our best in high downforce configuration this year – so slowly but surely, we are creeping back to the front.
Home favourite Sergio Perez starts the race from fourth place for Oracle Red Bull Racing with a time of 1:18.128s while Carlos Sainz starts the race fifth place with a time of 1:18.351s while Valtteri Bottas starts the race from sixth for Alfa Romeo Racing starts the race from sixth with a time of 1:18.401s and speaking following the session the Finn said:
“We had a really good qualifying, on top of a weekend in which we have consistently been in the top ten. It’s a good result ahead of tomorrow and I’m personally pleased with having delivered the best lap of the whole weekend when it mattered, at the end of Q3. The car was good from the get-go, all we needed was to refine the setup to extract even more performance; the track layout did help, with slow-speed corners that really work well for us. I’m optimistic for tomorrow: we need points for our battle in the championship and we’re in an excellent position to have a good fight. It’s F1, so everything can happen, but we’re up there and that’s what matters today.”
Charles Leclerc starts the race from seventh with a time of 1:18.555s starting the race just ahead of Lando Norris who set a fastest time of 1.18.721s and speaking following the action he said:
“I’m very happy, it was a good day today and I’m pleased with P8. I did a very good lap in Q3 to put us ahead of both the Alpines, which is the best we could do in the conditions. We’re too far off the teams ahead, but that’s usual, so I’m happy because we’ve given ourselves a good chance going into tomorrow’s race. It’s a long run down to Turn One, many things can happen. We’ll switch our concentration to the race and focus on having a clean start, getting away, getting our heads down and having a clean race from then on.”
Fernando Alonso starts the race from ninth just ahead of Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo who commented following the action saying:
“I think it was certainly promising in some areas and we had decent pace. The first run in Q2 was decent. There were a few places to improve – a couple of corners in the middle sector – but I felt like it was definitely achievable. On the second run, though, we just came out in loads of traffic and the out-lap was compromised: it was just too slow and so the brakes weren’t in and tyres weren’t in. We needed to prepare better for that, and it ultimately cost us. I think things still look encouraging for tomorrow. We should have some pace, but I would have loved to have shown a bit more and got into Q3 today.”
Zhou Guayne starts the race from 12th place and speaking following the action he commented saying:
“In terms of today’s qualifying, I feel I did the best I could: in the end, I was very close to getting into Q3 again, being just two tenths off. I struggled the whole weekend so far and it hasn’t been easy to have a smooth, trouble-free session, especially on a track that is not among the easiest ones to drive. Sector one has been the toughest one for me to face today, so to get this close to Q3 with my final lap was a positive: I tried and eventually I didn’t make it, but at least this time I feel there was nothing left out there. It’s great to see Valtteri being so fast today, and overall, the progress both cars have been making. The gap for the top ten is quite close, and I think we will be in a good position for fighting for points tomorrow, so let’s see how it goes.”
Yuki Tsunoda starts the race from P13 and speaking following the action he commented saying:
“It’s a bit of a shame that we didn’t make it through to Q3 today. If you look at the pace in the practice sessions it was really strong, so I think we should’ve been up there. The track position on our final push lap in Q2 wasn’t great, which meant I couldn’t get the car up to temperature and it compromised the lap. We need to make the most of any opportunity we can tomorrow and look towards the points.”
Pierre Gasly starts the race from P14 and speaking following the action he commented saying:
“We started the weekend really well yesterday, but since FP3 we’ve started to struggle a lot, sliding all over the place. Normally we’re able to find solutions ahead of Quali, but we haven’t been able to this time. I was pretty happy with my final lap this afternoon, but unfortunately the pace just wasn’t there. We’ll need to try something tomorrow, it’s a tricky track here and our long-run pace is looking stronger, so for sure there’s an opportunity in the race to make our way forward.”
Kevin Magnussen starts the race from 20th having been handed a five-place grid penalty with Mick Schumacher elevated to P15 just ahead of Sebastian Vettel while Williams Racing’s Alex Albon and Nicholas Latifi start the race 17th and 18th place respectively while Lance Stroll starts at the back with Magnussen.