Sergio Perez takes Miami Grand Prix pole ahead of Fernando Alonso as Charles Leclerc’s dramatic late spin raises a red flag, leaving Max Verstappen NINTH…while Lewis Hamilton is just 13th
- Sergio Perez took pole position after a dramatic qualifying session in Miami
- Charles Leclerc crashed late, leaving Max Verstappen in ninth place
- Lewis Hamilton retired in Q3 and will start tomorrow’s race from 13th place
Lewis Hamilton endured a terrible qualifying session for the Miami Grand Prix – finishing in 13th place – when Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc crashed again, gifting pole position to Sergio Perez.
Max Verstappen starts ninth due to the crash, Fernando Alonso second and Carlos Sainz third with Kevin Magnussen fourth in a chaotic grid.
As for Hamilton, he failed to beat his teammate George Russell, who crept into Q3.
A dejected Hamilton came straight on the radio to say, “We left much too late.” But in reality, he and Mercedes were way off the pace in practice and his early exit came as no great surprise.
He was 1.1 seconds behind Verstappen and two tenths behind Russell in the same session.
Sergio Perez took pole position for Red Bull at the Miami Grand Prix on Saturday
Perez got pole after Charles Leclerc crashed into the barriers late in Q3
Lewis Hamilton had a miserable qualifying session and could only finish in 13th place
Hamilton has now been outscored 4-1 by Russell this season. The sport’s most decorated driver shook his head as he got out of the car.
Russell eventually qualified sixth.
Hamilton’s progress was checked early on when he was squeezed into Turn 17 by Kevin Magnussen’s Haas and returned to the pits to check whether his contact with the barrier had damaged his front wing.
“I hit the wall,” he said before returning to battle.
Leclerc’s crash at Turn 7, where he crashed on Saturday, triggered a red flag that ended proceedings. Verstappen failed to get into a final flying lap and turned the sky blue on the radio.
It was a terrible afternoon for McLaren. Both cars were bombed in Q1. Lando Norris qualified 16th with rookie teammate Logan Sargeant just 19th. A pained expression appeared on CEO Zak Brown’s face as he saw the results on the timing screens.
Making things even more awkward is the fact that just last week in Baku, McLaren underwent a major upgrade – the one intended to unlock the speed their original design lacked.
Local boy Sargeant, who hails from Fort Lauderdale, finished last ahead of Williams. The Grand Prix will be the 22-year-old’s first time racing in his home country, having moved to Europe to further his career. It promises to be a tough afternoon during his debut in the United States.