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Bahrain Grand Prix 2021

Spectacular Verstappen pips Hamilton to Bahrain GP pole position

Max Verstappen pulled out a brilliant lap at the death as the Red Bull driver usurped Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton to top spot right as the chequered flag fell.

Verstappen gasly
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Red Bull's Max Verstappen has taken pole position for the season opener in Bahrain, having overcome Lewis Hamilton's final flying lap right at the very end of the Q3 session.

The Dutch driver set a 1:28.997 on his final run in Q3, pushing across the finishing line as the chequered flag fell. This time was enough to pip Lewis Hamilton, as the Mercedes driver had just set a 1:29.385 just a few seconds before to snatch provisional pole on his final run.

Valtteri Bottas had to settle for third place in the second Mercedes, a further two tenths behind Hamilton, while Charles Leclerc offered Ferrari fans hope of a strong race after placing in fourth in his SF21.

While the top three all made it through Q2 on the medium tyres and will start on that compound, Leclerc will start on the soft tyre.

Pierre Gasly finished in fifth for AlphaTauri, having also made it through Q2 on the medium compound.

Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris finished sixth and seventh respectively for McLaren, both of them starting on the soft compound after initially trying the medium tyre at the start of Q2.

Carlos Sainz will start from eighth position for Ferrari, also on the soft tyre like teammate Leclerc, while Fernando Alonso immediately announced his presence in the top ten once again by placing ninth in his Alpine on his firat qualifying appearance since 2018.

Lance Stroll finished in 10th for Aston Martin.

Knocked out in Q2

Red Bull's Sergio Perez was knocked out in 11th place, having tried to make it through into Q3 on the medium compound.

His first laptime was deleted for exceeding track limits at Turn 4, while his second laptime wasn't quite good enough to make it into the top ten.

Joining Perez on the sidelines was Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi in 12th place, while AlphaTauri's Yuki Tsunoda was in 13th.

The Japanese driver was one of the stars of Q2 and placed in second, but couldn't move up into Q3 after a scruffy lap.

Kimi Raikkonen was knocked out in 14th place, with Williams' George Russell in 15th.

Vettel the big casualty of Q1

Sebastian Vettel was the big scalp of Q1, with the Aston Martin driver knocked out after being caught out by yellow flags at the end of the session.

While much happier with the handling of his AMR21, Vettel's final lap was marred by yellow flags as Nikita Mazepin spun his Haas at the end of the main straight.

Added to that was further yellow flags in the second sector as Carlos Sainz suffered a cutout on his Ferrari that slowed him on his way back to the pits.

Result Qualification - Bahrain

Pos. Driver Team Time Tyre
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F1 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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