Charles Leclerc - credit: @ Ferrari Spa

F1: Leclerc wins exciting pole for Mexico City GP (Update)

Logan Sargeant has had a 10-place grid penalty imposed and two points placed on his super license for overtaking Yuki Tsunoda under yellow flags in Q1

October 28, 2023 

In a big surprise, it was a Ferrari 1-2 in qualifying for the 2023 Mexico City GP, with Charles Leclerc nipping Carlos Sainz Jr. and Max Verstappen.

–by Mark Cipolloni–

Who says F1 is not exciting?

Charles Leclerc’s lap of 1m17.166s was good enough to beat his Ferrari teammate by just 0.067s and Max Verstappen by 0.097s in an exciting qualifying session.

To be honest, I did not expect to be on pole position today, I thought we were lacking in FP3″ said Leclerc.

Charles Leclerc - credit: @ Ferrari Spa
Charles Leclerc – credit: @ Ferrari Spa

We’ve had a pretty good pace all weekend, but I’m not sure if it will be enough to challenge for the win. First place here, I’m not sure, is the best starting place!

“It was a very strange one, the whole weekend I’ve struggled to put a lap together and the first lap I’ve put together is the first one in Q3,” said Sainz.

“I struggle to understand, but we managed to put together a good lap when it counted. We are not as strong in high fuel as in low fuel.”

“It’s very difficult, it’s very low grip around here because of the altitude,” said Verstappen who topped all three practice sessions but lost pole to the Ferraris when it counted..

“The last sector we were struggling a little bit more than we liked, but it is a long race, a lot of laps to be raced. I would have liked to start first, but we’ll have a good slipstream down to Turn 1.”

Daniel Ricciardo was an excellent 4th for Alpha Tauri as he makes a case to eventually drive for Red Bull again.

Mexican hero Sergio Perez rounded out the top-5 in his #11 Red Bull Honda.

Lewis Hamilton, who topped Q2, only managed P6 when it counted in his #44 Mercedes.

Oscar Piastri and George Russell are next up with Valtteri Bottas and Guanyu Zhou rounding out the top 10.

Several drivers were under investigation by the Stewards, so the lineup below might change.

2023 Mexico City GP Qualifying Result

1 Charles Leclerc MON Scuderia Ferrari 1m18.401s 1m17.901s 1m17.166s
2 Carlos Sainz ESP Scuderia Ferrari 1m18.755s 1m18.382s 1m17.233s
3 Max Verstappen NED Oracle Red Bull Racing 1m18.099s 1m17.625s 1m17.263s
4 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Scuderia AlphaTauri 1m18.341s 1m17.706s 1m17.382s
5 Sergio Perez MEX Oracle Bull Racing 1m18.553s 1m18.124s 1m17.423s
6 Lewis Hamilton GBR Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team 1m18.677s 1m17.571s 1m17.454s
7 Oscar Piastri AUS McLaren F1 Team 1m18.241s 1m17.874s 1m17.623s
8 George Russell GBR Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team 1m18.893s 1m17.673s 1m17.674s
9 Valtteri Bottas FIN Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake 1m18.429s 1m18.016s 1m18.032s
10 Zhou Guanyu CHN Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake 1m19.016s 1m18.440s 1m18.050s
11 Pierre Gasly FRA BWT Alpine F1 Team 1m18.945s 1m18.521s
12 Nico Hulkenberg GER MoneyGram Haas F1 Team 1m18.969s 1m18.524s
13 Fernando Alonso ESP Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team 1m18.848s 1m18.738s
14 Alex Albon THA Williams Racing 1m18.828s 1m19.147s
15 Yuki Tsunoda JPN Scuderia AlphaTauri 1m18.890s No Time Set
16 Esteban Ocon FRA BWT Alpine F1 Team 1m19.080s
17 Kevin Magnussen DEN MoneyGram Haas F1 Team 1m19.163s
18 Lance Stroll CAN Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team 1m19.227s
19 Lando Norris GBR McLaren F1 Team 1m21.554s
20 Logan Sargeant USA Williams Racing No Time Set


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