F1: Leclerc wins pole for Monaco GP

Charles Leclerc has won pole for the Monaco GP, which will be especially important with the forecast of rain for the race on Sunday.

Leclerc’s lap of 1m11.376s was 0.225s faster than Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz Jr.  to give Ferrari a front-row lockout.

“It is very special, I’m incredibly happy,” said Leclerc. “It’s been a smooth weekend so far, that last lap before the red flag was really good. I was so on the limit.”

The Red Bulls will line up on row 2, Sergio Perez just ahead of his teammate Max Verstappen, but not before Perez hit the barriers on his final lap at the entrance to the tunnel, and Sainz arriving on the scene slammed the brakes on too late, also losing the rear and hitting Perez’s car with the rear of his F1-75.

Perez and Sainz crash at entrance to tunnel

All of which meant no one on a lap could improve. That left Leclerc on pole from his teammate, Perez third and Verstappen fourth.

“Perez crashed in front of me, I was on my flying lap, I saw the yellow flag and hit the brakes and had to avoid him as best I could,” said Sainz.  “It’s a shame, another year I couldn’t go for pole position, but it’s Monaco. We will never know but I was feeling good with the car today.”

“I don’t think the pole was on today, Charles was mighty,” said Red Bull boss Christian Horner.

“It was a shame because I think both of our drivers could have improved a little. It’s still P3 and 4, maybe some weather around. We’ll fight from there.”

Lando Norris rounded out the top-5 for McLaren, 0.473s back.

George Russell again easily beat his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, Russell in 6th and Hamilton in 8th, separated by 0.4s

Of note – Mercedes F1 boss Toto Wolff missed qualifying at the Monaco Grand Prix after reports suggest he has lost his voice. The Mercedes boss skipped his media duties this morning, with trackside engineer Andrew Shovlin taking his place in the team principal’s press conference.

Fernando Alonso just managed to get a lap time set before the reds came out, so he starts ahead of former teammate Hamilton, with Sebastian Vettel and Esteban Ocon rounding out the top 10.

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR22 made it to Q3 unlike his slower teammate Lance Stroll who was out in Q1

With the potential of rain on the way tomorrow, there is still so much to play for. With pole position and his wingman Sainz set to share the front row, can Leclerc ace his home race on Sunday, and see the checkered flag for the first time in his career in Monaco?

Zhou Guanyu out in Q1 and will start last

Qualifying Results

1 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:12.569 1:11.864 1:11.376 24
2 55 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:12.616 1:12.074 1:11.601 25
3 11 Sergio Perez Red Bull Racing 1:13.004 1:11.954 1:11.629 25
4 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 1:12.993 1:12.117 1:11.666 25
5 4 Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes 1:12.927 1:12.266 1:11.849 27
6 63 George Russell Mercedes 1:12.787 1:12.617 1:12.112 27
7 14 Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault 1:13.394 1:12.688 1:12.247 22
8 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:13.444 1:12.595 1:12.560 29
9 5 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Aramco Mercedes 1:13.313 1:12.613 1:12.732 28
10 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault 1:12.848 1:12.528 1:13.047 22
11 22 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:13.110 1:12.797 20
12 77 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1:13.541 1:12.909 17
13 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 1:13.069 1:12.921 20
14 3 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes 1:13.338 1:12.964 21
15 47 Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari 1:13.469 1:13.081 17
16 23 Alexander Albon Williams Mercedes 1:13.611 14
17 10 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1:13.660 10
18 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin Aramco Mercedes 1:13.678 11
19 6 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes 1:14.403 13
20 24 Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1:15.606 9


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