Charles Leclerc will start on pole position for the 2023 Azerbaijan Grand Prix after a superb lap on Friday to end Red Bull‘s dominance in qualifying this season.
It was Leclerc‘s third consecutive pole position around Baku, as he underlined his raw speed with a stunning lap at the end of Q3, having matched Max Verstappen‘s time on the first runs in the final part of qualifying to the thousandth.
Verstappen will start on the front row, ahead of sprint race winner Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz, who has been off the pace compared to teammate Leclerc all weekend.
Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso are together on row three, then come Lando Norris in the upgraded McLaren and Yuki Tsunoda, who had a strange accident at Turn 13 that led to his tyre falling off in the sprint race.
Baku weather for Azerbaijan GP
The weather will be similar to Saturday with the air temperature at 25 degrees celcius when the Azerbaijan GP begins at 15:00 local time (12:00 UK).
Baku is unique due to the long shadows from the tall buildings, so some parts of the circuit, where the sun is shining on will be above 40 degrees celcius on the track.
As the race goes on, the track temperature will drop significantly be around 10 degrees, which will change the behaviour of the cars.
Baku is known as the City of Winds, but wind won’t be too much of an issue with a maximum speed of 14mph during the 51-lap Grand Prix.
Low tyre degradation on the smooth surface means a one-stop race is almost certain, unless a late safety car emerges in the final 20 laps.