F1 Canadian GP 2024 – Qualifying: Highlights and Reaction

Follow all the F1 action on the Total Motorsport live blog as teams and drivers take to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve for Qualifying at the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix which will determine the grid for Sunday’s race


Good evening and welcome to Total-Motorsport’s live coverage of Qualifying for the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix as Formula 1 returns to North America. The 2024 Canadian GP kicks off the ninth round of the season, following recent European races in Imola and Monaco.

The 4.361-kilometre circuit, named in honour of Canadian F1 legend Gilles Villeneuve, features a mix of six left-hand and eight right-hand corners, creating one of the lowest average speed tracks of the season. Success at this venue hinges on stability under braking and effective traction out of the numerous chicanes and slow corners, including the notorious hairpin leading onto the long back straight. 

Unlike Monaco, the Canadian GP offers ample opportunities for overtaking, particularly at the end of the straight leading to the final chicane, which is guarded by the infamous “Wall of Champions.” Recent renovations have seen the entire track resurfaced and the kerbs replaced, maintaining its characteristically low abrasiveness but introducing unknowns that will be evaluated by Pirelli’s engineers during initial tests.

Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes were a surprise package in Free Practice 3 as Hamilton found himself almost half a second ahead of Max Verstappen, despite the Red Bull benefitting from track evolution. Are they in the pole? Nobody knows! Qualifying will be electric.

Stay tuned to Total-Motorsport.com for all the live action from the 2024 Canadian GP with this decisive qualifying session at the historic Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

F1 Canadian GP 2024 Qualifying – Updates and highlights

Max Verstappen’s in some trouble…

Max Verstappen has been told to report to the stewards for an alleged breach of Article 34.8 of the Formula One Sporting Regulations and Appendix L, Chapter IV, Article 5b of the International Sporting Code and non-compliance with Race Director’s Event Note (item 11, document 29) – Leaving the Pit Lane.

The driver and team representative are required to report to the Stewards at 18:15, in relation to the incident.

The team argued that Car 1 had crossed the solid white line separating the fast lane from the working lane when it was released from the garage. This, they claimed, necessitated following Article 34.8 procedures to leave the pit lane in the order cars arrived. However, the Stewards found this assumption incorrect, noting that no part of Car 1 had crossed the solid white line separating the fast lane from the working lane.

The Stewards clarified that the fast lane is the lane closest to the pit wall, marked by two solid white lines, and that other white lines and painted areas are irrelevant in this context. Given that Car 1 was not in the fast lane at the session’s start, the regulations and the Race Director’s Event Notes (item 11, document 29) only required the driver to merge into the fast lane safely, without impeding cars already there.

The Stewards concluded that these requirements were met, determining no further action was necessary.

Lando Norris starts third, does he think McLaren can win?

Norris didn’t say whether McLaren can win but he didn’t count it out either as the Brit is optimistic for his chances tomorrow. Perhaps he’s secretly praying for a Turn 1 incident so it can all open up for him?

“I’m super happy,” Norris said of lining up third for Sunday’s Grand Prix. “First of all, congrats to Mr Russell. He has been quick all weekend, so congrats to him and Mercedes.

“But I’m happy with third. When it’s so close you always think, ‘Could I have like jumped in the car for that little bit more?’ But third is a good job by us. So I’m happy and excited for tomorrow.”

Max Verstappen reacts to P2…

This session threatened to be a disaster for Max Verstappen and Red Bull as their car looked to be really struggling, but he pulled a lap out of the bag and could not have been closer to pole position if he tried.

How does he feel about missing out for just the second time in 2024?

It’s how it is, right?” Verstappen said when asked about tying Russell’s time. “I think overall we still had a good qualifying. The whole weekend has been still a bit tricky for us, but to be P2, I’d take it.

“Going into qualifying I would have definitely taken that. So that it was that close at the end makes it really exciting for tomorrow as well. I felt good in Monaco but it was just not our track, it was not happening for us. This weekend again we didn’t have a great build up to today.

“But I think it will be quite an interesting race with the tyres tomorrow, how they are going to fare. The weather as well – it keeps on coming in and out, the rain. So hopefully it will be very exciting.” 

George Russell, what a moment!

A third career pole position for George Russell and there was literally nothing in it! Will the Mercedes be able to go for the win in Sunday’s Canadian GP?

“Amazing. It feels so good,” Russell told media after qualifying. “So much hard work at the factory has gone into this and we said it in Monaco, we hope this is the start of something for our season, and I think it is.

“I’ve missed this feeling. Excited for tomorrow. First step done, but now obviously we’ve got our eyes on that win. Why not? Of course. Let’s go for it. The car has been feeling amazing since we brought some upgrades to Monaco, we have really been in that fight now. So we’re going for it tomorrow.”


George Russell and Max Verstappen set the exact same time of a 1:12.000 but because the Mercedes set it first he will take pole position for the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix! It’s Russell’s first pole for almost two years!

What an effort by Daniel Ricciardo who goes fifth behind both McLaren’s, spear-headed by Lando Norris! Lewis Hamilton had a shocking final run and finds himself seventh on the grid, despite looking the faster Mercedes driver all weekend…

Pole: George Russell

2nd: Max Verstappen

3rd: Lando Norris

4th: Oscar Piastri

5th: Daniel Ricciardo

6th: Fernando Alonso

7th: Lewis Hamilton

8th: Yuki Tsunoda

9th: Lance Stroll

10th: Alex Albon

McLarens run out of sequence

McLaren are doing their own thing with a mix of cool down and push laps and they go second and third, splitting the Mercedes. Will they be able to surprise everyone at the end?

Final laps due up which means fresh tyres are strapped on

Everyone did their first runs on used set of tyres and now they’re going to put on a bunch of fresh rubber for their last shots at pole position, of which Mercedes looks very good for.

Footage shows Hamilton losing his time in the final corner when he had a big slide out of the chicane, it would have punished him all of the way down to the line. He’s 0.280 down on George Russell.

First laps on the board…

Mercedes crush Max Verstappen’s early time on their first runs as George Russell beats him by 0.358 before Lewis Hamilton slots in just behind.

Could we be looking at Mercedes’ first front-row lockout since the 2022 Brazilian Grand Prix?

Q3 UNDERWAY: Who will take pole position for the 2024 Canadian GP?

Will it be a third straight pole here for Max Verstappen or will Lewis Hamilton steal the show at the track he loves so much?

What about the McLarens or Fernando Alonso? Stay tuned to find out…

What a horror show from Ferrari…

It’s raining in Canada!

This really does let the cat out of the bag and throws ALL of the learning from the last two qualifying sessions out of the window! Now it’s a game of risk and cojones and it gives Max Verstappen the chance for a massive reprieve!


Charles Leclerc is OUT! Carlos Sainz is OUT! That lack of preparation time has cost them so, so dear and they are dumped out of qualifying! Can you believe it! That’s huge in their fights with McLaren! Both bemoan a complete lack of grip on the car!

Max Verstappen left it until he had 90 seconds on the clock to get in his good lap and the Dutchman managed to get through at the very death to go fifth fastest after just squeezing through!

Out in Q2: Leclerc, Sainz, Sargeant, Magnussen and Gasly!

Rain update… It’s almost here….

Remember that huge rain cloud we showed you about 15 minutes ago? Here it is now. It’s seemingly likely it’s going to be dominating Q3 making the hunt for pole a complete guess and measure of bravery!

George Russell has a very scary moment

At Turns 3 and 4 the Mercedes driver completely loses control of his car but manages to snap it back with a very good save, that was inches away from the barrier and an end to his Q2 running!

“Holy moly!”, comments Russell with another British-ism.

Six minutes to go: Verstappen in trouble!

Max Verstappen’s out there but he’s struggling to find time as his latest lap only puts him 10th with Yuki Tsunoda 0.027 behind in the final elimination spot!

Lance Stroll, Logan Sargeant, Alex Albon and Pierre Gasly all need to find some extra speed as everyone comes crawling out of the pits for their final runs now…

Verstappen rages at Russell

With eight minutes to go, Max Verstappen feels as though he’s impeded by George Russell and he slams the Mercedes for getting in the way, even suggesting he did it on purpose through his frustation.

So far, there’s no action by Race Control. On that note, Hamilton and Tsunoda were cleared for the Q1 incident involving Oscar Piastri…

Max Verstappen noted by race control

The world champion has been jotted down for failing to follow the race director’s instructions so that will probably be an administrative penalty if he’s guilty. He was sat in the middle of the pit lane over the fast lane as he looked to get out of his garage.

GREEN FLAG: Q2 is underway

George Russell sets the first time with a 1:13.121, which is then swiftly beaten by Lewis Hamilton.

Drops of rain hitting the track!

The rain is here as the fans dive for the waterproof ponchos and people rush back into their garages! Right at the start of Q2 this could mean that the opening laps are utterly critical.

Spots of rain are at Turn 7 and 8 according to McLaren and they expect it to last for a maximum of three minutes.

Rain is creeping in on the track…

This could get messy! Here is the weather forecast as of 15:21 local time! Look at that huge downpour to the left…


Sergio Perez will be starting from 16th for the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix as his shocking form continues just days after he extended his contract! He was dumped out by just 0.037 in another horrific day for Red Bull!

Joining him is Pierre Gasly (15th), Valtteri Bottas (17th), Esteban Ocon (18th), Nico Hulkenberg (19th) and Zhou Guanyu (20th).

FIVE MINUTES TO GO: The men in trouble are…

16) Oscar Piastri, McLaren

17) Sergio Perez, Red Bull

18) Pierre Gasly, Alpine

19) Esteban Ocon, Alpine

20) Zhou Guanyu, Sauber

Perez pits after setting some green sectors! He will have it all to do on that final run and will be under a lot of pressure.

SIX MINUTES TO GO: Piastri reports some impeding

Lewis Hamilton and a RB get in the way of Oscar Piastri who is quick to report both cars, saying they interfered massively.

Charles Leclerc also reports both Red Bulls, but nothing will come out of that because they were to the left hand side and out of the way.

EIGHT MINUTES TO GO: Here’s the bottom five:

Zhou, Ocon, Gasly, Perez and Hamilton all need to get a move on but with rapid track evolution, they probably won’t be down there for too much longer.

And just like that, Hamilton moves up to third fastest, a couple of tenths on the quickest time.

13 minutes to go: Carlos Sainz takes a trip across the grass..

Tyres are cold according to Lance Stroll and it catches Carlos Sainz out at Turn 1 as he has to bail out and take to the grass to avoid the walls.

Light rain reported according to McLaren…

So far it’s only said to be drops at Turns 7 and 8, so that’s not a big problem for these F1 cars just yet.


Drivers will have 15 minutes to get in their quickest times and this time it could be the early laps that prove to be the crucial ones…

80% chance of rain!

There is an 80% chance of rain according to the FIA at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve meaning that those early laps in the dry will be critical since rain means it’s basically impossible to improve.

Then it might flip and it could be the last man on track who goes quickest! This could be the best qualifying session of the season!

Qualifying is almost here and Zhou is ready to go

After crashing in FP3, Zhou Guanyu’s Sauber has been patched up and he’s all ready to go and attack the track in qualifying. A good effort by his mechanics to give him a chance to save his weekend!

Here’s how the 2025 grid looks to be shaping up:

Mercedes, Aston Martin, Alpine (x2), RB, Sauber, Williams and Haas (x2) are the remaining spots on the grid as it begins to close up for next season…

Read more about Yuki Tsunoda’s contract extension

Tsunoda commits his future to the team for another year. What did the driver and crew have to say about it?


An impressive 2024 season sees Yuki Tsunoda retain his drive in Red Bull’s sister team. That’s a nice boost for him ahead of qualifying!

Will we some some penalties for impeding later today?

Keep an eye out after qualifying because the chequered flag might not be the classified results if people can’t get out of the way…

Will it rain in qualifying in Montreal?

FP1 and FP2 were marked by rain causing chaos and there was a shower around half an hour ago at the track so the big question is, will it rain during the session and throw all of the pre-session calculations out of the window?

Pushing to the limit: Will Max Verstappen take pole position in 34 minutes?

ICYMI: Here are your FP3 results as Lewis Hamilton stole the show

Hamilton set a very impressive lap-time as Mercedes turned up the heat, securing a 1-3 in FP3 but how far off is the chasing pack?

Another key update on the driver market, this time from Carlos Sainz and Williams!

Sainz has been shopping for a 2025 drive since learning he would lose his seat in February to Lewis Hamilton. After talks with Mercedes, Red Bull and Audi, he has also spoken with Williams and it seems that they’re really keen on him.

Unfortunately for Logan Sargeant, that means his time in F1 is likely to come to an end at the end of the 2024 season…

Are Mercedes all-in on their young prodigy, Kimi Antonelli?

Antonelli has impressed throughout Formula 2 this season after he skipped F3 and that means he could be due to replace Lewis Hamilton for 2025. Both Prema drivers would step up from F2 as Oliver Bearman has reportedly signed with Haas F1!

What a story for the pair.

Welcome to the Formula 1 grid Oliver Bearman!

The Daily Mail reports that the youngster has signed a deal with Haas after impressive them and Ferrari throughout the early rounds of the 2024 season. He finished seventh on his debut at the Saudi Arabian GP when he stood in for Carlos Sainz.

Bearman will be thought to earn around £250,000 from the Haas team.

Canadian GP 2024 Pirelli Tyre Info

The Canadian Grand Prix marks the third consecutive race to feature Pirelli’s softest tyre compounds: C3 as Hard, C4 as Medium, and C5 as Soft. The 4.361-kilometre Gilles Villeneuve Circuit, known for its low average speed and technical demands, including braking stability and traction out of chicanes, remains one of the least abrasive tracks, although recent resurfacing might alter grip levels. 

Canadian GP 2024 Pirelli Tyre Info

Where to Watch the F1 2024 Canadian GP

Sky Sports F1 remains the home for live Formula 1 racing in the UK. The channel will provide comprehensive coverage of the 2024 Canadian GP, including practice, qualifying, and the race itself. Meanwhile, F1 fans in the USA can catch all the action from Montreal across ESPN with the race on ABC.

Brandon Sutton
Brandon Sutton
Brandon is an alumni of an NCTJ and BJTC Liverpool John Moores University course, and has been with Total-Motorsport.com for over a year now. He enjoys covering all forms of motorsport but particularly focuses on Formula 1, and Brandon loves to debate various topics of the sport and other interests, especially if that topic doesn't have an open/shut answer such as the GOAT debate.
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