Max Verstappen in the Red Bull was a class apart as he qualified first on the F1 starting grid for the 2023 Spanish GP in Barcelona, and will be joined on the front row by Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz, who will be backed by his home crowd.
As has been the case all season, Red Bull were a step ahead of the other F1 team, with Verstappen almost half a second ahead of Sainz in qualifying.
Surprisingly, Lando Norris put his McLaren third on the grid in Barcelona, and will start the race alongside Lewis Hamilton in the Mercedes after Pierre Gasly was given a grid penalty.
The Alpine driver was penalised for blocking Sainz and Verstappen in qualifying, and was this handed two three-place grid drops, meaning he starts 10th.
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull|
|5||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin|
|8||Fernando Alonso||Aston Martin|
|11||Sergio Perez||Red Bull|
|13||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo|
|14||Nyck de Vries||AlphaTauri|
|16||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo|
- Pierre Gasly – 6 place grid penalty – Impeding other drivers
- Charles Leclerc – 15 place grid penalty – Additional power unit elements have been used
- Leclerc & Logan Sargeant – Required to start from the pit lane – Car modified in Parc Fermé
Disaster for Leclerc
With changeable conditions in Barcelona on Saturday, there were a number of big name casualties in qualifying. The biggest of those was Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari who could only qualify in 19th place after having to deal with an issue on the left side of his car.
Elsewhere, George Russell couldn’t make it out of Q2 and will start 12th in the Mercedes. To compound his disappointment he also had a coming together with teammate Lewis Hamilton and was given a formal warning by the stewards for an abnormal change of direction.
It didn’t end there, as the second Red Bull of Sergio Perez also came a cropper in Q2 and will start 11th on the grid for the 2023 Spanish GP.