F2: Tsunoda on pole as 18th-place Schumacher crashes in Sakhir qualifying

BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - DECEMBER 04: Yuki Tsunoda of Japan and Carlin (7) drives during qualifying ahead

Yuki Tsunoda’s championship chances heading into the Formula 2 season finale were extremely slim, with the Red Bull junior requiring a perfect weekend to stand any chance. But he’s delivered on his side so far, taking a fourth pole of the season in Sakhir on an evening when the title fight was blown wide open.

Tsunoda beat Nikita Mazepin by 0.122s for pole, with the Russian celebrating his promotion into Formula 1 with HAAS by taking his joint-best qualifying result of the season. Tsunoda’s fellow Red Bull junior, and Carlin team mate, Jehan Daruvala popped up in third.

READ MORE: Vettel happy to tell Mick Schumacher 'everything I know' ahead of young German's F1 debut

Mick Schumacher’s route to the title took a battering following a collision with Roy Nissany at the end of the session. The Ferrari junior – who was announced at Haas for 2021 on Wednesday – had struggled to get going in the session and was back in 18th when he came to blows with Nissany.

The German clipped the side of the Trident while attempting to find the racing line, which sent them both into a spin and resulted in Nissany running over the back of Schumacher’s rear wing.

Schumacher desperately needs another of his trademark strong starts if he is to clinch the title on Saturday, while Callum Ilott will fancy his chances of slashing the PREMA driver’s advantage at the top of the table down from 14 points. The UNI-Virtuosi racer will start from ninth in the Feature Race when action gets underway at 1510 (local time).

READ MORE: Who will come out on top in the F2 title race showdown this weekend?

BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - DECEMBER 04: Pole position qualifier Yuki Tsunoda of Japan and Carlin (centre),

Pole position qualifier Yuki Tsunoda of Carlin, second place qualifier Nikita Mazepin of Hitech Grand Prix (left) and third place qualifier Jehan Daruvala of Carlin (right) talk in a press conference



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