Saudi Arabia qualifying facts & stats: Hamilton nabs consecutive poles for the first time this season
Qualifying in Jeddah was every bit as fast as predicted, but it also boasted one of the most dramatic qualifying moments of the season.
Lewis Hamilton wound up on pole for Mercedes, sharing the front row with team mate Valtteri Bottas. But Max Verstappen could have so easily found himself in that P1 slot, the Dutchman well up on Hamilton’s time before crashing in the final corner. Here are the facts and stats from the first qualifying session at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix...
• Mercedes lock out the front row for the fourth time this season, and first time since Mexico.
• Lewis Hamilton takes consecutive poles for the first time this year.
• Hamilton has also taken both pole positions at new venues this year – with the driver who has taken pole at every new venue since 2010 going on to win the title.
• Max Verstappen was fastest of all through the first and second sectors, before crashing at the final corner in Q3.
• Charles Leclerc’s P4 is his best qualifying result (not including grid penalties) since Turkey.
• Sergio Perez bounced back from missing Q3 in Qatar by qualifying fifth.
• Pierre Gasly starts P6, the 16th time this season he has qualified in the top six.
• Yuki Tsunoda made it to Q3 for the fifth time in the last six races and lines up eighth.
• Esteban Ocon starts ninth, the same position he started from in Qatar.
• Antonio Giovinazzi reached Q3 for the fourth time this season, after dropping out in Q1 in Qatar.
• Daniel Ricciardo was eliminated in Q2 for the second straight race.
• Fernando Alonso will start 10 places lower than in Qatar, dropping from P3 down to P13.
• Carlos Sainz dropped out in Q2 – the fifth time in the past 13 races he hasn’t made it to the top 10 shootout. But the Spaniard has scored in all 13 races regardless.
• Sebastian Vettel dropped out in Q1 for the third time this year, and the first time since Zandvoort.
• Lance Stroll was out in Q1 for the fourth time in the last five races.
• This is the first time both Aston Martin cars have failed to reach Q2 in 2021.