Charles Leclerc’s new best time in Q2
Charles Leclerc marks a new best time in Q2. With a 1:41.037, Pérez is narrowly overtaken by 0.094 seconds. Verstappen is third ahead of Alonso and Sainz. Little is currently coming together at Mercedes. Hamilton and Russell can only be found in eighth and ninth place.
Improvement by Sainz
Carlos Sainz can improve and takes fifth place in the intermediate classification. Sergio Pérez still holds the best time.
Norris drives out
Norris had been in the pits for a long time, now the British driver in the McLaren is also going into Q2. In addition to him, Piastri in the second McLaren, Bottas, Sargeant and Sainz are currently eliminated.
Also Leclerc on it
Charles Leclerc is also close to the best time after his first flying lap. 1:41.216 minutes means third place, only 0.085 seconds behind. With my teammates, on the other hand, it doesn’t go together at all. He’s only 14.
Sergio Pérez sets a new best time in Q2
Red Bull Racing
It doesn’t take long before there’s a new leader. Sergio Pérez clocked a 1:41.131, just ahead of Verstappen, who crossed the line just after him.
First lap times in Q2
Aston Martin F1 Team
There are the first lap times in Q2. Fernando Alonso is currently in first place with a 1:42.203. Russell and Ocon follow behind. The Ferraris are now out, Norris is still in his garage.
Norris and Ferrari are waiting
While the first drivers are now going on the flying laps, Lando Norris and the two Ferraris are still waiting in the garage.
It continues with Q2! In the next 15 minutes it’s all about getting into the top ten. The drivers are once again quick to get out on the track.
Q1 is over and unfortunately Nico Hulkenberg is already among those who retire. It wasn’t enough for Zhou either. After accidents and technical defects, Magnussen, Gasly and de Vries are also out.
Charles Leclerc’s new best time in Q1
Finally, Charles Leclerc drives the fast lap again. With Hülkenberg, on the other hand, it looks as if he is already leaving.
Hulkenberg in danger zone
Nico Hulkenberg is in the danger zone two minutes before the end of Q1. He is currently ranked 14th.
Pit radio Kevin Magnussen
Kevin Magnussen is asked by the pits to come to the garage. There is a technical problem. He asks to stay out but is told the team cannot “risk” it.
Max Verstappen’s new best time in Q1
Red Bull Racing
Pérez led the bar for a short time, but Verstappen is now back in front. He was able to beat his team-mate by 0.358 seconds.
To a new one
The track has been reopened and the cars are quickly heading back onto the course. Just under seven minutes remain in Q1.
Nobody with a fast lap
No one could set a new time and so the ranking hasn’t changed in the last few minutes. Verstappen leads ahead of Leclerc and Alonso. Hulkenberg is sixth behind Norris and Hamilton.
Lucky for Sainz
Carlos Sainz was lucky on his side. The Spaniard had spun but was able to avoid an impact.
Departure in turn 3
Pierre Gasly’s accident happened in exactly the same place as de Vries. In turn 3, the Frenchman had misjudged and crashed after an improvement. “I couldn’t stop the car,” he reports over the radio. In the meantime he has parked in one of the emergency exits.
Only a few minutes of free travel and then the red flag comes out again! Gasly is traveling with damage and appears to be smashed.
The track is open again and it doesn’t take long for the drivers to head out of the pits again.
We’ll continue soon
Qualifying is scheduled to resume at 3:24 p.m. Then there are still 10:17 minutes left to set a fast lap in Q1.
There is an all clear
While work continues on the track, race officials have announced that there will be no further investigation. It’s probably about the headrest, which is said to have been loose during the run.
Verstappen incident noted
Race control announces that an incident involving Verstappen has been noted. It is not entirely clear what it is about, it is only said that it was released under unsafe conditions.
Technical problems at Magnussen
Meanwhile, Kevin Magnussen has technical problems. Shortly before the break, he radioed that there were problems with the engine. In the Haas box, he is reassured that it shouldn’t be a big mistake like in the first training session. The interruption is now of course in their favor.
There is the red flag! Nyck de Vries hit the barriers. In turn 3, the AlphaTauri driver misbraked.
Alonso takes third place
Fernando Alonso takes third place in the interim standings. However, 0.7 seconds were already missing in the direction of Verstappen. Hülkenberg is in good sixth place.
Max Verstappen’s new best time in Q1
Red Bull Racing
Max Verstappen takes first position. The world champion was able to set a 1:41.887. Charles Leclerc is second ahead of the two McLaren drivers. In the meantime, de Vries has also left.
First lap times
In the meantime there are the first lap times. Alex Albon leads ahead of Lewis Hamilton. But their times may not last long.
First yellow flags
That’s how you know Baku. There are always yellow flags because someone misses the braking point and drives into the emergency exit. This time Zhou got it.
Only one is missing
Max Verstappen has meanwhile steered his car onto the track. His compatriot Nyck de Vries is the only driver still in the garage. The top 15 drivers will make it into Q2.
The traffic lights are green, qualifying has started in Baku. Among the first drivers out on track is Pierre Gasly, with the mechanics doing their best during the break to get the car back on track.
The Azerbaijan Grand Prix takes place on the Baku City Circuit, which has a length of 6.003 kilometers. The circuit offers a lot of variety and, unlike the track in Monaco, many overtaking opportunities. At the beginning, four 90-degree bends await the drivers, then they head into the old town. At just 7.5 meters wide, this is the narrowest point on the calendar. At the end of the lap there is the longest straight, which measures 2.2 kilometers. If you catch a slipstream here, you can make up a lot of time.
What’s up at Mercedes?
Mercedes seemed to be holding back in practice and neither Hamilton nor Russell finished in the top ten. Nico Hülkenberg finished his training in 15th place behind Yuki Tsunoda in the AlphaTauri.
Verstappen just ahead in training
In the only practice session of the weekend, Max Verstappen prevailed in a session riddled with many problems and interruptions. The Dutchman was 0.037 seconds faster than Charles Leclerc on the soft tire. Sergio Pérez followed in third place ahead of Carlos Sainz. Overall, the drivers and teams had just under 45 minutes to test after there were red flags after a Gasly failure. Pierre Gasly had to deal with a fire in his car after a hydraulic leak and finally had to park the car so that the marshals could extinguish it. At the same time, Magnussen had to retire.
Verstappen leads World Cup
This season there is a clear favorite for the world title in Max Verstappen. The Dutchman currently leads the World Cup with 69 points ahead of team-mate Sergio Pérez, who has 54 points. Fernando Alonso follows in third place with 45 points ahead of Lewis Hamilton (38 pts) and Carlos Sainz (20 pts).
New procedure on the sprint weekend
Shortly before the weekend in Baku there was another change in the course of the weekend. From now on, the sprint will no longer determine the starting grid for Sunday, but will be counted as a separate race with its own qualifying session. The so-called sprint shootout on Saturday morning will be held instead of the 2nd practice session. So today’s qualifying determines the starting grid for Sunday.
Things get really serious for the first time at the sprint weekend in Baku at 3:00 p.m. and qualifying for the Grand Prix on Sunday is on.