Bahrain GP 2024

MARCH 1, 2024

Qualifying Report - Verstappen clinches pole

Max Verstappen, Bahrain GP 2024
© Red Bull

The 2024 Formula 1 season kicked off with an electrifying qualifying session for the Bahrain Grand Prix, in which Max Verstappen emerged victorious, securing the pole position and setting the stage for a thrilling race.

The reigning champion saved his best performance for the final qualifying session (Q3), posting a remarkable time of 1m29.179s, to maintain his dominance in the sport.

Charles Leclerc, who had been a strong contender throughout the qualifying rounds, fell slightly short in the final run, finishing 0.228s behind Verstappen. Despite his impressive speed in the earlier sessions, Leclerc couldn't match his Q2 pace in the final run, setting the scene for a compelling showdown in the race as he aims to challenge Verstappen from the outside of the front row.

George Russell's journey to third on the grid was fraught with drama, notably overcoming a tense moment in Q2 where he risked elimination. His ability to navigate through pressure was evident as he ascended the ranks in Q3, securing a second row starting position despite an investigation over exceeding the maximum delta time in Q1, which ultimately led to no further action.

The qualifying session underscored the competition among the drivers, with Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez completing the top five, indicating a fierce battle in the midfield. Fernando Alonso's strategic decision to complete only one lap in Q3 paid off, earning him the sixth spot, while McLaren's Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri secured solid starting positions, highlighting the team's competitiveness .

Lewis Hamilton faced an unexpected challenge, unable to replicate his teammate Russell's performance, which adds an extra layer of intrigue to the race dynamics.

The session was characterized by razor-thin margins and last-minute position changes, exemplified by the dramatic shifts in Q2 where Russell and Hamilton's final laps significantly impacted the outcomes for other drivers like Yuki Tsunoda and Lance Stroll.

The qualifying session set the tone for a race that promises intense on-track battles. As the lights go out at the Bahrain International Circuit, the stage is set for a memorable race that could redefine the early standings and rivalries in the 2024 Formula 1 season.