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Red Bull Racing's Sergio Perez Wins Pole For Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Mick Schumacher Crashes Hard


Sergio Perez claimed a first career pole with a scintillating last-gasp effort in a dramatic and heavily disrupted qualifying session in Saudi Arabia.

The Mexican snatched top spot from Ferrari's Charles Leclerc in the final seconds, with the pair split by just two-hundredths of a second at the conclusion of a wild session on the streets of Jeddah.

The session had paused for an hour during Q2 after a violent high-speed crash for Haas' Mick Schumacher, who was extricated to the medical centre – where no injuries where revealed – and later to hosptial for precautionary checks.

Nicholas Latifi had also earlier triggered red flags as he swiped the wall in Q1 – a session that saw Lewis Hamilton make a shock exit in 16th.

Hamilton's team mate George Russell only just squeezed into Q3, but rallied to eventually claim sixth, fractions behind Alpine's Esteban Ocon. Max Verstappen in the second Red Bull had to settle for fourth, two-tenths down on his team mate.

Ferrari had appeared early favourites by going fastest in both Q1 and Q2, and then setting the early pace in Q3 – first via Sainz, and then Leclerc. But Perez saved his best for his final run to claim a dream first pole at his 215th attempt – the longest wait in F1 history.

Alpine's Fernando Alonso and Alfa Romeo's Valtteri Bottas claimed a share of the fourth row, just ahead of Pierre Gasly and Kevin Magnussen in the lead AlphaTauri and Haas respectively.

McLaren suffered a double exit in Q2, as late gains for Gasly and Magnussen lifted both drivers out of the drop zone – and bumped Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo to 11th and 12th respectively.

Guanyu Zhou was 13th, with Schumacher's opening effort in Q2 enough for 14th, ahead of Aston Martin's Lance Stroll. Schumacher's participation in the race will however depend on both full medical clearance and a full car rebuild.

It was Stroll who had effectively eliminated Hamilton – the Briton had momentarily lifted himself to 15th, only for Stroll to immediately reply and seal Hamilton's fate.

Joining him as those out of Q1 were the Williams pair of Alex Albon and Latifi, in 17th and 19th respectively. They sandwiched Aston Martin super-sub Nico Hulkenberg – while Yuki Tsunoda was effectively forced to watch from the sidelines as a suspected fuel problem left him unable to register a time.

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Qualifying Results:

  1. Sergio Perez

  2. Charles Leclerc

  3. Carlos Sainz

  4. Max Verstappen

  5. Esteban Ocon

  6. George Russell

  7. Fernando Alonso

  8. Valtteri Bottas

  9. Pierre Gasly

  10. Kevin Magnussen

  11. Lando Norris

  12. Daniel Ricciardo

  13. Zhou Guanyu

  14. Mick Schumacher

  15. Lance Stroll

  16. Lewis Hamilton

  17. Alexander Albon

  18. Nico Hulkenberg

  19. Nicholas Latifi

  20. Yuki Tsunoda

See the full recap and "As It Happened"

All the info from Saudi Arabia:

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