Verstappen on pole in Mexico

Max Verstappen stuns the Ferraris in qualifying at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez

Max Verstappen will start the Mexican Grand Prix from pole position by setting a new track record at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

The Red Bull driver posted a time of 1:14.758 to stun the Ferrari drivers, who had been favourite for the front row of the grid.

A number of drivers missed the chance to improve at the end of Q3 as Valtteri Bottas had a heavy crash on the final corner, meaning the session finished under yellow flags.

Charles Leclerc did manage to complete a second fast lap before the yellows came out, but the Ferrari driver seemed to be pushing too hard, running wide before the back end stepped out, costing him time in the final sector.

Haas’s Mexico struggles continue has both drivers dropped out in Q1. Romain Grosjean’s first flying lap was ruined when the Frenchman locked his tyres, sending his car spinning across the grass.

Both Mercedes cars needed a second run to get their laps right in the second part of the qualifying hour, as Bottas locked up while on his out lap, while Lewis Hamilton missed the apex after running wide.

There was also disappointment for the home fans in Q2 as Sergio Perez narrowly missed out in a spot in the top 10.

Both Toro Rosso cars progressed to Q3, despite Pierre Gasly having missed the majority of the morning practice session due to illness, meaning all four Honda-powered cars start in the top 10.

Bottas’s crash means Alexander Albon will start from fifth – his best qualifying in F1 so far, while Carlos Sainz continues to lead the charge from outside the top three teams, placing his McLaren in seventh.

Provisional qualifying result:

1 Max Verstappen (Red Bull)

2. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)

3. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari)

4. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)

5. Alexander Albon (Red Bull)

6. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)

7. Carlos Sainz (McLaren)

8. Lando Norris (McLaren)

9. Daniil Kvyat (Toro Rosso)

10. Pierre Gasly (Toro Rosso)

11. Sergio Perez (Racing Point)

12. Nico Hulkenberg (Renault)

13. Daniel Riccairdo (Renault)

14. Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo)

15. Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo)

16. Lance Stroll (Racing Point)

17. Kevin Magnussen (Haas)

18. Romain Grosjean (Haas)

19. George Russell (Williams)

20. Robert Kubica (Williams)

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