RACE DEBRIEF

    Abu Dhabi qualifying took place under the lights at Yas Marina, with Max Verstappen getting the best out of his RB18 one last time to grab the last pole on offer in 2022. He lines up alongside his team mate, Sergio Perez grabbing second as Ferrari locked out the second row. But while starting on pole bodes well for the Dutchman, there are plenty of other facts and stats to peruse after an electrifying qualifying…

    • The pole-sitter has won the last seven races at this track.

    • Red Bull’s 25th front row lock-out was only the second they have managed in the hybrid era, and first since 2018.

    • Max Verstappen takes pole at the same track for three consecutive years for the first time.

    • Sergio Perez managed to grab his fifth front row start of the season, with his first ever top three start at Yas Marina.

    READ MORE: Verstappen storms to pole as Red Bull score 1-2 in final qualifying session of the season at Yas Marina

    • Charles Leclerc came within 0.040s of giving Ferrari their first ever front row start at this track.

    • Carlos Sainz starts fourth, for his best ever grid slot here.

    • Both Ferraris are in the top four on the grid here for the first time since 2019.

    • If the top four hold station to the line, Perez will finish second in the drivers’ championship and Ferrari second in the constructors’.

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    Ferrari had to settle for the second row in Abu Dhabi
    • Lewis Hamilton was fifth, meaning this is the first season in his career where he hasn’t taken a single pole position.

    • It is also his worst starting slot in 14 visits to Yas Marina.

    • George Russell lost out to his team mate by just 0.003s.

    • It meant that it was the first time in 10 years that there isn’t a Mercedes car in the top three here.

    READ MORE: Wolff says Abu Dhabi sits in the middle of Mercedes’ ‘table of doom’ forecast as he assesses chances of victory repeat

    • Lando Norris was seventh, his worst ever qualifying here. He is also seventh in the drivers’ championship.

    • Esteban Ocon is eighth on the grid and eighth in the championship.

    • The retiring Sebastian Vettel was ninth, for only his fifth Q3 appearance of the year.

    • Daniel Ricciardo qualified in P10, the same as his starting position here in 2021.

    • It is the Australian’s best qualifying since Monza, six races ago, although he has a three-place grid drop hanging over him.

    • Fernando Alonso failed to reach Q3 for the first time since Zandvoort, seven races ago.

    • The Spaniard still has no Q3 appearance here since 2016, having only escaped Q1 by 0.052s.

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    Vettel grabbed a very popular top 10 starting slot
    • Mick Schumacher ended a three-race run of Q1 eliminations.

    • This is the sixth time this year that Schumacher has escaped Q1 but his team mate Kevin Magnussen has not.

    • Lance Stroll was outqualified by Vettel 13-7 this season.

    • Zhou Guanyu was P15, with Alfa Romeo/Sauber having only managed one top-10 start at Yas Marina in the hybrid era – Leclerc’s eighth in 2018.

    • Kevin Magnussen was fastest in Q3 in Brazil, but knocked out in Q1 today.

    READ MORE: Horner confirms Ricciardo poised for Red Bull return

    • Pierre Gasly suffered his seventh Q1 elimination of the season, and was outqualified by Yuki Tsunoda for the ninth time this year.

    • Valtteri Bottas ends the season with consecutive Q1 eliminations.

    • Williams were the two slowest cars on the grid for the third time in the final six races of the year.