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F1 2023

Qualifying gaps: Which drivers outperformed their team-mates?

Although the points in F1 are distributed on Sunday, F1 drivers battle for pride in qualifying on the Saturday. RacingNews365 breaks down each of the qualifying battles throughout the course of the year.

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Max Verstappen scored the most pole positions in 2023 having started there 12 times, followed by Charles Leclerc with five poles.

While it might seem predictable that the guy with the most wins this year (19 out of 22) also takes the most poles, it was the battle between the teammates that heated up.

Mercedes drivers George Russell and Lewis Hamilton were closely matched, with the pair matching each other over the course of the season. Over the entire season, Hamilton was the faster of the two but by a minimal margin: the seven-time world champion averaged just 0.017 seconds faster than Russell.

The smallest gap - in terms of average lap time - was at Alpine. Pierre Gasly averaged just 0.007 seconds faster than Esteban Ocon over 22 races. In terms of position, this was not the case: Gasly was 14 times ahead of his teammate, six more than Ocon (eight times).

Battle of the teammates

The biggest difference in terms of lap time was at AlphaTauri, where the now experienced Yuki Tsunda was up against rookie Liam Lawson. In the five races Lawson competed, he averaged 0.582 seconds slower than the Japanese driver.

Logan Sargeant also averaged more than half a second slower than teammate Alex Albon by 0.560 seconds, having failed to out-qualify him for the entire season.

Max Verstappen qualified ahead of Sergio Perez 20 times in 2023. The gap between the two Red Bull drivers averaged 0.495 seconds in favor of the Dutchman.

Things did not fare any better for Lance Stroll, who started 19 times behind teammate Fernando Alonso and conceded an average of 0.440 seconds.

View below all the qualifying differences as well as the results of the 2023 duels between them.

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